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Returning Player Refresher: Deyshawn Bond

A Rimington Award watch list nominee two years running, Bond is the anchor for UC up front.

NCAA Football: Toledo at Cincinnati Andrew Weber-USA TODAY Sports

Even if it seems like a cliche, saying someone is the quarterback of a certain positional group can still be a meaningful comment to make. That brings me to Deyshawn Bond, the quarterback of the Cincinnati Bearcats’ offensive line.

Now, obviously that should not be taken literally. Bond isn’t going to line up under center. In fact, as you probably know, he lines up at center. Named to the Rimington Award watch list in back-to-back seasons, Bond is easily the best offensive lineman the Bearcats have now that Parker Ehinger is gone.

A three-star recruit out of high school, Bond has been an integral part of one of the American Athletic Conference’s most prolific offenses from the day he first stepped on campus.

In 2013, the 6’1", 291-pound native of Indianapolis played in 13 games and was named a second-team Freshman All-American by CollegeFootballNews.com. That rookie season was a strong one for Bond and the Bearcats as a whole. UC led the AAC in rushing (2,188 yards) while averaging 4.23 yards per carry. The Bearcats also led the entire conference in total offense (6,137 total yards) and were the only team in the league to surpass the 6,000-yard mark.

Bond missed a pair of games during his sophomore campaign, but still made 10 starts and served as an anchor for another strong offensive unit for the Bearcats, who allowed only 16 sacks, the second-fewest in the AAC.

He came back in an even bigger way as a junior, starting in 12 of 13 games and sitting out just once against East Carolina. With Bond serving as the pivot point for the offense, UC ranked sixth in the country in total offense (537.8 YPG), although it did surrender 26 sacks, a noted jump from 2014. As one of the leaders of the unit, Bond earned second-team All-AAC honors.

In 2016, Bond is once again on the national radar and considered one of the best in the business. Like Ryan Leahy, he is guaranteed a starting spot barring an injury or an Independence Day-type event. Based on the reboot of that franchise, let’s hope neither event occurs.