2019: Returning starting running back ... could play a significant role in the kickoff return game ... preseason All-ACC selection as an all-purpose back by Athlon Sports (1st team) and as a running back by Phil Steele’s College Football Preview (2nd team) ... candidate for the Doak Walker Award, an honor presented annually to the top running back in the nation by the PwC SMU Athletic Forum ... candidate for the Paul Hornung Award, an honor presented annually to the most versatile player in the nation by the Louisville Sports Commission ... Duke’s leading returning rusher from a season ago ... in 25 career games (8 starts), has rushed 193 times for 944 yards (4.89) and seven TDs, caught 30 passes for 257 yards (8.57) and two TDs, completed lone pass attempt for 12 yards and returned 25 kickoffs for 541 yards (21.64) ... enters 2019 with the 10th highest yards per carry average in Duke history ... rushed for 847 yards in 2018, the most for a back during the David Cutcliffe Era and the 10th highest single-season total in program history ... has amassed 1,742 all-purpose yards ... established the Duke single-game record with 403 all-purpose yards (162 rushing, 89 receiving & 152 kickoff return) at Pittsburgh in 2018 ... became just the third player in ACC history to reach the 400 all-purpose yardage plateau (Clemson’s Tobias Palmer; 496 vs. N.C. State in 2012 & Wake Forest’s John Leach; 411 vs. Maryland in 1993) ... has scored 54 career points ... has lost two fumbles in 249 career touches (124.5 touches/fumble) ... has played 830 career snaps ... has topped the 100-yard plateau on the ground twice, against Pittsburgh (10-162; 2018) and Miami (14-113; 2018) ... has rushed for 50+ yards in eight career games ... has eight rushing attempts of 20+ yards including a career-long 75-yard TD jaunt versus Miami in 2018 ... has seven games with 2+ pass receptions including a career-high seven catches against Wake Forest in 2018 ... has three games with 30+ receiving yards including a career-best 89 yards at Pittsburgh in 2018 ... has surpassed 100 kickoff return yards twice, against Pittsburgh (6-152; 2018) and Wake Forest (6-110; 2018) ... has two scoring plays of 70+ yards (75-yard rush vs. Miami, 2018; 84-yard reception vs. Pittsburgh, 2018) ... sits 56 rushing yards shy of becoming the 49th player in Duke history to reach the 1,000-yard standard on the ground ... among active players in the ACC, enters the 2019 season ranking sixth in kickoff returns, seventh in kickoff return average, eighth in kickoff return yards, ninth in all-purpose yards, 10th in rushing attempts and rushing yards, 11th in all-purpose yards per game (69.68) and tied for 15th in rushing TDs.
2018 Game-by-Game Statistics
2018: Second team All-ACC selection as an all-purpose back ... played in all 13 games with eight starts ... earned starting assignments in the final eight weeks of the year ... rushed 161 times for 847 yards (5.26) and seven TDs, caught 26 passes for 253 yards (9.73) and two TDs and returned 23 kickoffs for 502 yards (21.83) ... completed lone pass attempt for 12 yards ... totaled 1,602 all-purpose yards (123.23), the fifth highest single-season total in school history ... received the Bob Pascal Award as the team’s top running back ... finished fourth in the ACC in all-purpose yards per game and seventh in kickoff return average ... in ACC-only action, led the league in all-purpose yards per contest (157.38), ranked fourth in kickoff return average (22.15) and 10th in points per game (4.50) ... ranked second on the team in total points with 54 as a key component of an offensive unit which scored 40+ points five times to match the program record for 40+ point games with the 1943 and 2014 squads and scored 382 total points, the fourth highest single-season total in program history ... rushing yardage total marked the most for a back during the David Cutcliffe Era and the 10th highest single-season total in program history ... reached the 100-yard rushing plateau twice against Pittsburgh (10-162) and Miami (14-113) ... logged 50+ rushing yards in eight games ... recorded single-game rushing TDs against Army West Point, Baylor, N.C. Central, Virginia Tech, Georgia Tech, Miami and North Carolina ... led the Blue Devils with eight rushing plays of 20+ yards ... averaged 5.4 yards per rush on 80 first down carries and 5.5 yards per rush on 59 second down attempts ... gained a team-high 17 first downs on second down rushes ... paced Duke with four TDs on first down attempts ... tallied 3+ receptions in five contests with a season-high seven versus Wake Forest ... reached 30+ receiving yards in three games including a season-best 89 at Pittsburgh ... caught TD passes versus Pittsburgh and Wake Forest ... owned Duke’s second and third-longest plays of the season with a 75-yard touchdown rush at Miami and 74-yard touchdown reception at Pittsburgh ... returned 3+ kickoffs three times with a season-high six returns versus Pittsburgh and Wake Forest ... surpassed 100 kickoff return yards against Pittsburgh (6-152) and Wake Forest (6-110) ... logged a team-high 14 kickoff returns of 20+ yards ... had a 29-yard kickoff return versus Temple in the Walk-On’s Independence Bowl to post the third-longest KOR in Duke bowl game history ... paired with Quentin Harris (5) to form the 27th duo in program history to each total five rushing touchdowns in a campaign ... on the field for 701 snaps.
2017 Game-by-Game Statistics
2017: Played in 12 games ... missed the Baylor contest ... rushed 29 times for 89 yards (3.07), caught four passes for four yards (1.00) and returned two kickoffs for 39 yards (19.50) ... logged a season-high 20 rushing yards against both N.C. Central and Northwestern ... had a season-high two pass receptions at Virginia Tech ... kickoff returns came versus Miami (1-24) and Georgia Tech (1-15) ... on the field for 129 snaps.
PRIOR TO DUKE: Played at Pace Academy for coach Chris Slade ... consensus three-star prospect by ESPN.com, Rivals.com, Scout.com and 247Sports.com ... listed as the No. 36 athlete in the country by Scout.com ... ranked among the top 60 running backs nationally by 247Sports.com (No. 46) and ESPN.com (No. 54) ... all-region pick following senior season as Pace went 6-5 with a state playoff appearance ... as a junior, received all-state honors after rushing for 1,562 yards and 10 TDs as team went 13-2 and captured the state championship ... in the state title game, rushed for 114 yards and three TDs as Pace defeated Fitzgerald, 42-21 ... in sophomore campaign, caught 26 passes for 492 yards and rushed 27 times for 162 yards while totaling eight TDs as Pace went 7-6 with a state playoff appearance ... also played basketball.
PERSONAL: Born February 18, 1999 ... majoring in sociology while pursuing a certificate in markets and management ... son of Deon Jackson and Dadra and Tiffani Smith ... father lettered four seasons (1996-97-98-99) as a running back at The Citadel and rushed for 1,346 career yards ... mother was a member of the track and field program at the University of Miami and earned All-America honors after placing 13th in the long jump at the 1995 NCAA Indoor Track & Field Championships ... stepfather played basketball at Utah State University ... brother, DarQuez Watson, lettered four seasons (2014-15-16-17) as a wide receiver at Presbyterian College and finished career with 53 pass receptions for 638 yards and three TDs.