Rhule reveals players voted to wear single digits

Junior running back JaMychal Hasty flies past the Iowa State defense on Nov. 18, 2017. Hasty had 110 total yards from scrimmage in a 23-13 loss. Hasty was awarded a single digit jersey number this year. Photo credit: Lariat File Photo

By Adam Gibson | Sports Writer

Baylor football head coach Matt Rhule is continuing the tradition in which players vote on awarding their teammates with a single-digit jersey. Rhule announced today that junior running back Jamycal Hasty, junior linebacker/safety Henry Black, junior safety Chris Miller, junior cornerback Grayland Arnold, senior wide receiver Jalen Hurd, senior defensive tackle Ira Lewis and sophomore running back John Lovett have been awarded single-digit jerseys.

When players vote to determine who will receive a single digit, they choose a player who shows the characteristics of a leader, a tough player and someone who is always playing their hardest to lead the team to victory.

Last season, Hasty played in eight games, starting in three of them. Over those eight games, he had 76 rushing attempts for 314 yards and one touchdown. In the Texas Tech game, Hasty posted career-highs for both receiving and catches with nine catches for 51 yards, which is the third most recorded by a Baylor running back in school history. He was also recognized as 2017 preseason All-Big 12 and 2018 preseason All-Big 12 by Athlon Sports.

Hasty said he was honored to be a guy who players voted as a leader and that he is going to play to the best of his ability to be the standard for how a single-digit player plays.

“It means a lot that my teammates think so highly of me and just try my best to live up to that standard every day,” Hasty said. “[I] just go out there and just play relentless, toughness, just go out and play hard. Lay it all out on the field for my teammates.”

Hasty will be wearing the number six this season after wearing 33 in high school and his time at Baylor. He said he wants to keep with the theme of threes since that is what he’s worn most of his football career and three plus three is six.

Black, another upperclassman awarded a single digit, is one of the veterans for the team, having played in 25 Baylor games, which ranks him eighth among active players. While his position is listed as a linebacker/safety, Black said he doesn’t mind moving around on defense and learning different positions since it helps the team out.

“We’re just trying to put guys in places to make plays,” Black said. “Whatever the team needs is what we’re fulfilling.”

Last year as a sophomore, Black played in all 12 games, starting in half of them. Over the span of the season, he had a career-high 25 tackles and his first career interception.

Black, like Hasty, said he was grateful to be awarded the single digit. He attributes his success that got him to this position to the players around him and the help from different coaches.

“I’ve been around some great players. I’ve learned a lot of different things and I’ve learned a lot from Coach Rhule and Coach [Phil] Snow, so it just helps me carry it into this year,” Black said. “It’s an honor to be recognized as a single-digit player on this team. That shows how much hard work you put in every day.”

While seven of the nine single digits are taken, Rhule said the final numbers: one and two, will remain open for the time being “because there’s some close votes.”