Displays stiffness through the hips, struggles to quickly change directions and make people miss as the line and has only one gear to his game. Isn't a guy who can outpace defenders on any level of the field and is limited in his ability to cut back against the grain and create when plays aren't blocked off properly for him. Possesses only an average feel running inside, can be patient waiting for blocks to set up, but is often forced to take what the defense gives him.
Showcases decent hands out of the backfield, can adjust to the football and come down with the grab, but isn't real shifty after the catch and isn't real effective when asked to make plays down the field. Showcases an above-average willingness as a blocker, is smart, understands blitz pickup and will throw his shoulder into a defender, but isn't real technically sound and fails to stick to his man through the play.
Impression: A tough, hard-nosed runner who can break tackles through contact. But is limited athletically and this type of back is a dime a dozen; will have a tough time sticking to an NFL roster."
Positive: Strong interior runner who picks up difficult yardage. Keeps his feet driving up the field, shows the ability to break tackles, and picks up yardage off initial contact. Aggressively lays his shoulders into defenders and falls forward when tackled. Solid receiver who adjusts to the errant throw and makes the reception away from his frame. Displays good vision picking up blitzes.
Negative: Straight-line runner who loses momentum when he must quickly change direction. Slow getting through cutback lanes. Runs a bit tall, which leads to a lot of heavy hits. Must works harder to finish blocks.
Analysis: Asiata is an adequate inside running prospect for the next level with limited upside. He's a potential third back for a power running offense."
2009-Started in four games before suffering a season-ending knee injury against Louisville ... was averaging a league-leading 101.3 yards per game entering the Louisville game ... four rushing touchdowns also led the league at the time of his injury ... finished with 74 carries for 330 yards for an average of 82.5 yards per game ... averaged 4.5 yards per carry ... had a career-high 156 yards on 36 carries against Utah State ... 36 carries tied the fourth-best single-game total in school history ... 94 yards on 20 carries vs. San Jose State ... also had nine receptions for 88 yards.
2008-Utah's leading rusher played in all 13 games with one start (Utah State) ... led Utah in carries (146), net yards (707), yards per game (54.4) and touchdowns (12) ... averaged 4.8 yards per rush ... finished seventh in the MWC in rushing (54.4) and tied for second in rushing touchdowns (12) ... 10th in the league in scoring (6.0 ppg) ... season-best 116 yards and 19 carries against Air Force ... other big games included 85 yards vs. New Mexico, 83 vs. San Diego State and 77 against Michigan ... also had 13 receptions for 111 yards and one touchdown ... 39-yard reception vs. Michigan ... completed 2-of-3 passes out of the "Asiata Formation," with both completions going for touchdowns.
2007-Injury redshirt ... broke his leg in the first game of the season at Oregon State ... prior to the injury, he rushed four times for 16 yards.
PRIOR TO UTAH: 2006 junior college All-American was also first-team all-Western States Football League ... led the WSFL and Snow College in rushing with 1,365 yards and 15 touchdowns in 2006 ... averaged 6.3 yards per carry and 136.5 yards per game ... rushed for 238 yards in a win over Scottsdale CC ... Snow won the WSFL championship in 2006 and bowl games in 2005 and 2006 ... 2003 and 2004 all-state and all-region selection for Hunter High (Utah) ... earned three letters in football and basketball ... Hunter was the 2003 state champion in both football and basketball.
PERSONAL: Son of Pete and Faulole Asiata ... two brothers and two sisters ... married to the former Tangi Atiga ... daughters Nana and Shawnee, and son Ephraim ... sociology major ... full name is Matthew Rentinai Asiata (pronounced ah-see-ah-ta) ... born July 24, 1987 in Santa Ana, Calif.
Strengths: Big, strong, and physical runner who is tough to bring down once he gets going downhill. He breaks arm tackles easily. A patient runner who has better than advertised shiftiness. Moves the pile. Can pick up the blitz well and is physical when he pops the pads. A team player who does all the little things to help the team win.
Weaknesses: Must be cleared medically as he has missed much of two seasons. Tenative at getting to the LOS at times. Not the most explosive back in and out of the hole. Will not be a home run threat as a runner. Loses his concnetration as a receiver occasionally
Projection: UDFA who will have to use his size and strength to develop into a complimentary or short yardage back."