On April 10, the Oakland Raiders re-signed running back Jalen Richard to keep him with the Silver and Black for a fourth season. A month later on May 10, Richard returned to Southern Mississippi to participate in the school’s graduation ceremony. Richard spent four seasons with the Golden Eagles, and on Friday, finally fulfilled his dream of walking across the stage to receive his diploma.
Congratulations to all of our graduates this week, but a special congrats to @RocketRich30 for coming back to walk across the stage!— Southern Miss FB (@SouthernMissFB) May 10, 2019
Your Golden Eagle family is proud! #SMTTT pic.twitter.com/BR3WuyrOZ2
Richard’s degree is in psychology, which coincides with his uncanny ability to be a positive influence around the Raiders locker room. His teammates love playing with him, and amidst a rough season in 2018, Richard never wavered in his positive mentality.
Through three seasons with the Silver and Black, Richard has tallied 1,025 yards on 194 carries (a hefty average of 5.3 yards per carry) and 1,057 yards on 124 receptions (8.5 average per reception).
The statistics speak for themselves and it is no wonder why the Raiders placed a second round tender on Richard. His play on the field is stellar, his mentality off the field is even better, and there are no questions surrounding Richard’s character. The former undrafted free agent is now making $3.095 million per season, quite a rise for the former Golden Eagle.
Richard will battle with Doug Martin, DeAndre Washington, Chris Warren, and promising rookie Josh Jacobs for carries this season after Isaiah Crowell tore his Achilles. Richard will likely maintain his role as a third-down back as his strength as a receiver out of the backfield is paramount in Gruden’s offense.
It is always nice to see players return to school to earn their degree. It shows initiative and frankly, is just cool to see. Richard is becoming a fan favorite of Raider Nation and it is much deserved. Congratulations to Richard and his family for an amazing accomplishment.