The Wolfpacker

Nov.-Dec. 2020

The Wolfpacker: An Independent Magazine Covering NC State Sports

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40 ■ THE WOLFPACKER J unior running back Ricky Person Jr. missed a com- bined nine games due to in- jury in his first two seasons with the Wolfpack. At one point in 2019, Person had to be carted off the field due to an ankle injury he suffered mid-season, which caused him to undergo season-ending sur- gery in October. The 6-1, 215-pounder now has been able to stay healthy through six games this fall and leads NC State with 73 carries, while he ranks second with 335 rushing yards, three total touchdowns and 489 all-purpose yards. But it hasn't been an easy path back. While many would think the physical rigors of rehab would be the toughest aspect of returning from multiple injury setbacks, the mental obstacles of the process proved to be the most taxing. "Everybody knew that I had injuries, and I was going through a lot of mental stuff at the time," Person admitted. "There was one point where I was like, 'Is football still for me?'" He was eventually able to overcome the hurdles of self-doubt as the emotions of last year's lost season faded. Person credited his faith and the support from the coaching staff and his teammates for getting him through the trying juncture. "I took that time to get closer to God, closer to football and I just asked myself this question," Person continued. "Is this still for me, and the answer was yes. "It seemed like I just had a shadow over me. Now this year, it's something that God has planned for me, and I feel like this year is going to be a great one." During the Wolfpack's 4-2 start, his pre- diction has been correct. He's led NC State in rushing in three contests and also has two performances with 100 or more all-purpose yards through the first half of the season. The prolonged break due to the COVID-19 pandemic this offseason probably couldn't Year-By-Year Production Of Ricky Person Jr. Games Rushing Receiving Yards From Total Year Played Yards Yards Scrimmage Touchdowns 2018 9 471 4 475 3 2019 7 229 75 304 4 2020* 6 335 59 394 3 * Through six games BOUNCE BACK Junior Running Back Ricky Person Jr. Has Been Able To Stay Healthy And Make A Big Impact This Fall BY JUSTIN H. WILLIAMS

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