On Lawrence: Will team with Tony Nelson in the backfield at tailback ... Will also see time at fullback, where he played major minutes last season leading the way for record-setting All-American Steve Baylark ... Excellent blocking skills ... Great athlete who is expected to have a big senior season ... Has good size and strength ... Could also see time returning kickoffs ... Comes off tremendous spring season ... Has fully recovered from a knee injury suffered on his first carry as a Minuteman in 2005 ... Joined UMass in July 2005 as a transfer from University of Connecticut.
As a redshirt junior in 2006: Played in 13 games, starting seven at fullback ... Had 34 carries for 174 yards along with 14 catches for 109 yards this season ... Fourth on team in rush yards ... Tremendous blocker for Steve Baylark in NCAA Tournament has Baylark averaged 163 yards in four games behind Lawrence ... In NCAA Final scored game's first touchdown on a 1-yard run 3:11 into the action against Appalachian State (12/15). Carried twice for 13 yards and had two catches for 14 yards ... In addition in blocking, carried three times for 13 yards and caught a pass for season-long 20 yards at #2 Montana (12/8) in NCAA Semifinal. Also two kick returns for 41 yards ... Two catches for 19 yards vs. Hofstra (11/18) ... Carried four times for 10 yards at #9 New Hampshire (11/4) ... In second straight start at fullback at Northeastern (10/28), help lead way for Steve Baylark's 152 yards. Also had 15 yards on two carries ... Started at fullback vs. Rhode Island (10/21), made two catches for seven yards and two carries for six yards ... Returned to action at Towson (10/14) and ripped off career-long 55-yard run in final minute as he totaled 61 yards on three carries ... Sat out Stony Brook (9/23) and William & Mary (10/7) with a hamstring injury ... At Villanova (9/16), carried five times for 10 yards and had two catches for seven yards ... Grabbed four passes for 30 yards along with 8 rushing yards on seven carries at Navy (9/9) ... Carried the ball six times for 38 yards and 2-yard TD vs. Colgate (9/2). Also had a pair of kickoff returns for 85 yards including a 65-yard return. That was the longest return by a UMass player since Jerome Bledsoe's 66-yard return in 1989.
As a junior in 2005: After transferring to UMass from UConn, made debut at Richmond (9/1) and injured his knee on his first carry of nine yards ... Did not play the remainder of the season while he rehabbed taking a redshirt season.
As a sophomore in 2004 (at Connecticut): Played in 10 games with starts at tailback in the first two games of the season in 2004, against Murray State (9/4) and Duke (9/11) ... Gained 117 yards on 28 carries with two touchdowns... Also caught five passes for 61 yards with a touchdown ... Had a 10-yard touchdown run to cap the scoring in UConn's Motor City Bowl win over Toledo (12/27) ... Did not play at tailback after the Duke game, but was used as a kickoff returner, running back a team-high 12 for a total of 186 yards ... Ran for 76 yards and a touchdown in 18 carries while making four grabs for 47 yards and another touchdown against Murray State (9/4) in the team's season opener.
As a freshman in 2003 (at Connecticut): Played in six games with starts against Lehigh (10/4) and NC State (10/11)...Gained 150 yards for the season on 45 carries with one touchdown while catching four passes for 14 yards...Made his first career start against Lehigh and ran for 88 yards on 19 carries including his first career touchdown...Made his collegiate debut at Virginia Tech (9/27), gaining 53 yards on 18 carries.
Before College: Starred at Bloomfield High School ... Rushed for 1,950 yards as a junior on 130 carries (15 yards per carry)... SuperPrep All-American in 2001 and named to Tom Lemming's National Top 100 list ... Named MVP of the 2001 state championship game after rushing for 268 yards and four touchdowns in the first half ... A two-time all-state and all-conference selection ... Started at tailback for two years and started at free safety and wide receiver as a sophomore ... Team captain ... Also earned all-state honors in the triple jump and competed in the 100 yard dash and on the school's 4x100 relay team ... Helped the Warhawk basketball team to the 2001 Class S state championship.
Personal: Matthew Nashid Lawrence ... Born on May 5, 1985 in Hartford, Conn. ... Son of Renneah and Marvin Lawrence ... Majoring in Sociology.
CAREER STATISTICS (Rushing) Year GP No. Yds. Avg. TD Lg. 2003 UC 6/2 45 150 3.3 1 27 2004 UC 10/2 28 117 4.2 2 11 2005 1/0 1 9 9.0 0 9 2006 13/7 34 174 5.1 2 55 2007 13/13 318 1585 5.0 16 62 Totals 43/24 426 2035 4.8 21 62
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