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2016 MAC Player Countdown #8: Joel Bouagnon, RB, NIU

Joel Bouagnon doesn't have a problem running through you.

Mike DiNovo-USA TODAY Sports

The preseason watch list pick for the Maxwell Award and Doak Walker award has a chancer to bring home plenty of hardware for the Huskies in 2016.

The first-team all-mac running back is back and so it seems is Jordan Huff, who wasn't on the roster as of a few weeks ago.

The thunder and lightning potential of these two has already been seen. Bouganon could really light up some defenses this fall. He has added motivation to work off when NIU was picked by the MAC media to end up behind WMU and Toledo. We as a site also picked WMU to finish in front of them. LET IT FUEL YOU JOEL. (Seriously though, I'd love to see a motivated Bouagnon wreck some dudes this year.)

The senior running back had 296 touches last year and DID. NOT. FUMBLE. Talk about reliability.

What people have said

"He always seems to be going forward." - Mike Patrick

"This guy is tough." - Ed Cunningham

What Bouagnon said

About NIU being picked to finish below WMU and Toledo:

"It doesn't surprise me because it happens every year," Bouagnon is cited as saying in an article by the Chicago Tribune's Rick Armstrong.

"It motivates me to work harder," he said. "I'm not thinking I've made it or let it go to my head. It's like a reality check. I've got to get down to business. It's a nomination, after all."

That second quote is what Bouagnon said in the same Tribune article about being named to the Walker and Maxwell watch lists.

Remember when Bouagnon...

  • Ran for three second-half touchdowns to help the Huskies come back from a 17-3 deficit in last year's season opener?
  • Had multiple touchdown runs of 22 and one of 53 against Miami last year? (Thanks for those stats
  • Won MAC West offensive player of the week when he ran for 156 yards and two touchdowns against Buffalo last year?
  • Scored multiple touchdowns in six different games?

Here's Bouagnon fighting for everything he can get against Ohio State. (79 yards and a plus 4.0 ypc average in the game.)