Omar Osbourne, the only UAlbany player selected all-CAA this preseason, is just 89 yards away from his second straight 1,000-yard season and he actually had no idea.
"On the season?" Osbourne said after the Great Danes finished practice on Wednesday afternoon. "Hey, you learn something new every day."
Of course, that's just the kind of player Osbourne is.
He's not a stat tracker, he's just sitting in his room pouring over box scores and post-game wrap-ups. He watches film. For hours. Then, for good measure, he watches it again, rewinding on the one time he fumbled this entire season.
Coming into this fall, Osbourne was touted as UAlbany's top returning offensive player, maybe even the Great Dane's best overall player.
He's lived up to the accolades and with four games left on the schedule, including a matchup against No. 2 New Hampshire this Saturday, Osbourne is looking (or hearing for the first time at practice) at 911 total yards and four touchdowns.
"He’s tough. He’s a physical, tough runner," Danes' coach Greg Gattuso said. "He’s a good inside runner. He’s physical and takes the punishment and just keeps going. I think the o-line is learning to battle and giving him some holes to run through."
So, how exactly has Osbourne managed the season thus far?
Easy. He's patient and perhaps the biggest metaphorical-fighter in the entire CAA. Osbourne has racked up six 100+ yard games this fall (13 on his career) and he's battled for every single one of those yards.
This is the kind of running back who is going to battle in those trenches. He'll move his feet for those hard-fought three yards but give him an extra block or a little bit of daylight and Osbourne can take defenders on 50-yard sprints up the field.
But while Osbourne is more than willing to battle up front, he's also the first to admit that sometimes he can get a little ahead of his own plan.
"Sometimes it’s difficult," he said. "After a successful season like last year and just wanting to do good, wanting to help your team out, you try to do a little too much. Last week when I had that fumble, fighting for extra yards, I’m trying to make a big play happen. Unfortunately someone comes out of nowhere and I don’t see them coming."
During UAlbany's media day this past August, Osbourne was one of the few people - players or coaches - who refused to accept the Great Danes 10th-place prediction. He talked about conference championships and playing for months to come. That was before the team had won at Bob Ford Field or posted its first CAA-victory.
Now, with November only a few days away and the final four CAA games of the schedule left in front of him, Osbourne's tune hasn't changed. He's still focused on posting notches in the win column and he's not entirely sure of what his stats are.
"It’s going to be tough," he said. "They’re all going to be crucial games. We’re trying to make it to the playoffs. We’re trying to win the conference. So every game from here on out is going to be a big crucial game."