This doesn't have the whole team but I remember reading that too...
Jones brilliant in backfield
Tailback has all the right tools to be a game-breaker
By John Niyo / The Detroit News
SOUTH BEND, Ind. -- It would appear Julius Jones has his work cut out for him.
Sophomore tailback Julius Jones averaged 5.8 yards per carry last season.
Jones, a sophomore tailback with the Irish, is a darkhorse candidate for All-America honors this season. But one preseason college football magazine went a few steps further.
Athlon looked into its crystal ball and came up with the NFL's Team of the Decade for 2010. And guess who was the team's tailback, paired in the backfield with Indianapolis Colts stars Edgerrin James and Peyton Manning?
Yep, you guessed it.
"It was shocking," admitted Jones, who was tipped off to news of the honor by his brother, Thomas, a rookie with the Arizona Cardinals.
"He must have a pretty good press agent," laughed Notre Dame Coach Bob Davie.
He does, indeed. Thomas Jones, the sixth overall pick in this year's NFL draft, apparently was the one who swayed the Athlon writers. He told them Julius, a 5-foot-10, 205-pound scatback who rushed for 375 yards on 65 carries as a freshman, was a better talent than his older brother.
The elder Jones was a star at Virginia, setting the school's career rushing mark. The younger Jones credits Thomas for much of his success as a freshman -- the two spoke on the phone almost nightly.
"He told me what to expect coming in," Julius Jones said.
And now the younger Jones is ready to make his own name, after coming on strong late last season for the Irish.
He fought for playing time with starter Tony Fisher despite playing hurt in October and November. Then he showed flashes of brilliance, including a 19-carry, 146-yard effort against Navy and a 67-yard punt return for a touchdown against Boston College.
"I mean, people want to play when they come in, and when you get an opportunity to play, you've got to take advantage of it," said Jones, a native of Big Stone Gap, Va. "I did that last year."
This year, with the extra bulk promising better durability, he figures to do much more. Davie says he'll make sure of that, "because when he's in the game, good things happen." His offensive coordinator, Kevin Rogers, promises to do his part, hoping to relieve some of the pressure on new quarterback Arnaz Battle.
One new wrinkle: Expect to see Jones at tailback with Fisher lining up at fullback at times this season.
"(Jones is) terrific with the ball in his hands," Rogers said. "He's one of those guys that you can't worry about what play you call when he's in the game. You have to be able to open your playbook and call any play you want."
And this year, Jones promises, he'll know the play when it's called.
"I think things are going to be a little more basic this year," said Jones, who has added 20 pounds of muscle since last year's opener. "My problem last year was learning all the plays. That's why I didn't play as much early. I think as far as that goes, everybody will be more ready to play. Last year, we had a lot of guys who weren't ready to play because they didn't know their assignments.
"But we've all put last year behind us. I'm just excited to get things started."