WHITE SWAN, Wash. — A tiny Washington high school is home to perhaps the largest running back anywhere in the country — amateur or professional.
At 400 pounds, Tony Picard racked up 576 yards rushing and seven touchdowns this year at White Swan High School. The Yakima Herald-Republic reports that his coach put Picard at running back because he was so athletic for his size. Many NFL running backs weigh half as much as Picard.
Current NFL rushing leader LeSean McCoy of the Philadelphia Eagles weighs in at 208 pounds. Picard’s size also rivals some of the largest NFL linemen around.
Picard hasn’t been the featured running back at White Swan, a school of less than 300 students. Smaller, quicker players have typically led the running game while Picard has been a reliable short-yardage back.
This year, he averaged nearly 6 yards per carry.
Video of Picard’s rumbling runs has drawn more than 2 million views on YouTube. The clips show the 17-year-old plowing through defenders while also showing swiftness on his feet. Picard hopes to go on to play college football.
“You’ll see the other team just kind of looking at him when they’re shaking hands, like, ‘Oh my gosh, do I really have to tackle this guy?’” Picard’s coach, Andy Bush, told ABC’s “Good Morning America.”
Picard didn’t draw much outside attention in the last few years as he helped his team to the playoffs three seasons in a row. That began to change this year when a photograph of Picard showed the running back ready to trample a defender who looked about one-third his body weight.
“It takes multiple guys to take me down, four or five,” Picard told “Good Morning America.” “I kind of take advantage of being this size.”
Picard also plays varsity basketball.