ATHENS, OHIO – The 2016 football season was a tough one for 2014 Covington graduate A.J. Ouellette as he suffered a season-ending injury in Ohio University’s season opener a year ago against Texas State.
Ouellette, who led the Bobcats in rushing with 785 yards as a true freshman and then again with 691 yards as a sophomore, was primed for another magical season until a freakish foot injury on the third carry of his junior season. The injury was so severe it required season-ending surgery, forcing Ouellette to red shirt his junior season and face an entire off-season of rehab.
But Ouellette was able to come back bigger, stronger and faster than before thanks to implementing the same tireless work ethic he showcased at Covington High School – where he set nearly every school rushing record imaginable.
Now, fully healthy once again, Ouellette is in the midst of yet another great season for the Bobcats as he leads Ohio with 747 rushing yards and 831 all-purpose yards in eight games. He is averaging 93.4 yards-per-game on the ground and 6.2 yards-per-carry while scoring six rushing touchdowns and one more score on a reception.
He also leads the Bobcats with four 100-plus-yard rushing performances as he tallied 102 yards against Kansas, 140 yards against Eastern Michigan, 125 yards against Massachusetts and 123 yards last week at Bowling Green.
Behind Ouellette’s leadership as one of the team captains, Ohio is now 6-2 on the season and likely bowl eligible after a convincing 48-3 victory over Kent State on Saturday. The Bobcats also remain in contention for the MAC Championship with a 3-1 record.
In the contest Ouellette tallied 91 yards on 11 carries and a touchdown in just six possessions of work. After scoring on a 37-yard run in the third quarter, Ouellette saw his afternoon end as the game became a blowout.
It was yet another stellar performance by the former Buccaneer as Ouellette moved into 10th all-time in career rushing yards at Ohio with 2,264 yards.
Ohio has four more regular season games this season beginning with a home contest against Miami on October 31st.