Diminutive UH RB Tylan Hines draws raves for his blocking

Nov. 10—Two years ago, Tylan Hines was accepted into the Air Force Academy Preparatory Academy.

Two years ago, Tylan Hines was accepted into the Air Force Academy Preparatory Academy.

In January, he gained admission to the University of Hawaii.

And this past Saturday, Hines, a freshman running back, joined the Rainbow Warriors' School of Hard Knocks. Left tackle Ilm Manning extended the invitation after Hines flattened a Fresno State defensive lineman.

"He got a knockdown, " Manning said of the initiation requirement to the club also known as "House of Pancakes."

"I had a little pancake, " Hines said. "It was great, the first one. Hopefully, some more will come later."

Hines credited time in the weight room under strength /conditioning coach Kody Cooke. There was a lifting session after Wednesday morning's 2-hour practice. "Coach Cooke gets us right, " Hines said.

At 5 feet 7 and 177 pounds, Hines can bench press 325 pounds. "Man, I've been training my whole life, " said Hines, who grew up in Dallas.

Hines appears to be a composite of former Warrior running backs. He has Gary Allen's gliding steps, Mike Bass' quickness, Diocemy Saint Juste's jump cuts, Avion Weaver's burst and Michael Brewster's ferocity, particularly on blocks.

"Really, low man wins, " Hines said of his blocking. "I feel I've got an advantage for being smaller. I try to get lower than others. That's taught across the nation."

In UH's four-wide offense, running back Dedrick Parson or Hines often hangs back as the lone backfield blocker. "Our coach gives us a lot of (blocking ) drills in practice, " Hines said of running backs coach Keiki Misipeke. "It's constantly repping in practice."

Of the knockdown, Hines said, "just one of my late pickups. I saw him coming around, and I picked him up."

Hines' versatility was displayed at Plano High, where he learned the three Rs : rushing, receiving, returning. "I did whatever the game plan was, " he said.

As a Plano senior, he was accepted into Air Force's prep academy. Hines, who graduated from Plano with a 3.66 GPA, received a recommendation from E.D. Seamster Jr., the pastor of Light of the World Church of Christ in Dallas.

"It was a good experience, " Hines said. "I met a lot of great people. I learned some life hacks that I'm still using."

A former coach at Plano recommended Hines to Bo Graham, who was UH's offensive coordinator at the time. Hines accepted the UH offer last November, and after four months at the prep academy, joined the Warriors.

Whenever he returns to the Southwest, Hines works out with Margin Hooks, a former NFL receiver who runs Sky's the Limit, and Josh Hicks, who is the offseason coach for Dallas Cowboys running back Ezekiel Elliott. "They help me perfect my craft, " Hines said.

Hines was used selectively in the first games. He has averaged 8.7 yards a touch the last two games.