Khalil Tate took the college football world by storm Saturday, rushing for 327 yards in the Arizona Wildcats’ 45-42 win over the Colorado Buffaloes.
That was good enough to break the FBS quarterback rushing record.
Tate deservedly got a lot of attention afterwards, being named the national offensive player of the week by the Walter Camp Football Foundation, College Football Player of the Week by CBS Sports, the National Offensive Player of the Week by Athlon Sports and the National Performer of the Week by College Football Performance Awards (CFPA).
He also got some love from SportsCenter and NBA superstar LeBron James.
“Sheesh,” James commented along with a few emojis on an Instagram post with Tate’s highlights:
LeBron approved of that performance by @KhalilDTN #BearDown pic.twitter.com/ZIs5I4GYXt— Tyler McCoy (@NotTylerMcCoy) October 9, 2017
Tate’s performance against Colorado most likely isn’t replicable, but it’s had a pretty amazing impact on the state of Arizona football.
At the Utah game two weeks ago, Arizona drew its lowest attendance since 1997. Fan interest was quickly diminishing, but Tate has provided the program a much-needed spark, generating some positivity among Arizona football fans.
Whether or not the sophomore can keep it up remains to be seen, but it’s been a nice change of pace for a fanbase desperate for something to be optimistic about.
Follow Ryan Kelapire on Twitter at @RKelapire