Montario Hardesty

Montario Hardesty

refer to caption

Hardesty with the Cleveland Browns
No. 31, 20
Position: Running back
Personal information
Date of birth: (1987-02-01) February 1, 1987
Place of birth: New Bern, North Carolina
Height: 6 ft 0 in (1.83 m)
Weight: 225 lb (102 kg)
Career information
College: Tennessee
NFL Draft: 2010 / Round: 2 / Pick: 59
Career history
Career highlights and awards
Career NFL statistics
Rushing yards: 537
Rushing average: 3.5
Rushing touchdowns: 1
Player stats at

Montario Hardesty (born February 1, 1987), is a former American football running back. Hardesty played college football at the University of Tennessee from 2005–2009, where he amassed fewer than 400 yards in each of his first four seasons before breaking out with 1345 yards and 13 rushing touchdowns in 2009. In 2015, Hardesty became the running backs coach and special teams coordinator for Norfolk State University.

High school career

Hardesty played football at New Bern High School. As a senior in 2004, he rushed for 2,002 yards on 272 carries. He had 19 rushing touchdowns. He was considered a four-star recruit and ranked 100th on the's list of the top 100 players in the class of 2005.[1] He was recruited as an "athlete", with the potential to play both running back and safety. He was recruited and offered a scholarship by the University of Nebraska, University of North Carolina, North Carolina State University, Notre Dame, Ohio State University, University of South Carolina, and Virginia Tech. However, he chose to play for Tennessee.[2]

College career

Hardesty was a three-year letter winner at Tennessee. He amassed 2,391 rushing yards on 560 attempts, 405 receiving yards on 38 receptions, and 26 total touchdowns.[3]

Hardesty was granted a medical hardship for the 2005 season because of a knee injury he suffered against Ole Miss. He rushed 6 times for 18 yards before his injury. In 2006, Hardesty started off the season with a 43 yard touchdown run against the University of California. His best game of the season was a 74 yard performance against the Air Force Academy. He played in 13 games, starting 5 of them. He finished the season with 384 rushing yards and 4 touchdowns.

Hardesty's 2007 season wasn't quite as good as his 2006 season. He had a touchdown in the opening game of the season against the University of California once again. He finished the year with 373 rushing yards and 3 touchdowns. 2008 was the worst statistical season of Hardesty's career at Tennessee. He ran for 271 yards, finishing the season with 6 touchdowns. He passed the 1,000 career rushing yard mark against Vanderbilt University in the season's next-to-last game.

In 2009, Hardesty was 20th in the NCAA's Division 1-A FBS division in rushing yards, with 1345 yards in 13 games.[4] He started the season off with 160 rushing yards and 1 touchdown against Western Kentucky University. He has passed the 100 rushing yard mark four more times in the 2009 season, against Ohio University, the University of South Carolina, Vanderbilt University, and the University of Kentucky. He was the Southeastern Conference's 4th leading rusher in the 2009 season with 1,345yds., behind Mark Ingram(Al. 1,658yds.), Anthony Dixon(Miss. St. 1,391yds.) and Ben Tate(Aub. 1,362yds.). Hardesty was first in the SEC in carries(282att.).[5][6]

Track and field

Hardesty was also an standout athlete at New Bern High School. He was a state 100 meters finalist in 2003. He decided not to run track and field at the University of Tennessee. His personal bests are 10.36 seconds in the 100 meters and 21.65 seconds in the 200 meters.

Personal bests

Event Time (seconds) Venue Date
100 meters 10.36 Greensboro, North Carolina 26 July 2004
200 meters 21.65 Greensboro, North Carolina 26 July 2004


Rushing Receiving
Year Attempts Yards Average Long TD Receptions Yards Average Long TD
2005 6 18 3.0 11 0 0 0 0.0 0 0
2006 107 384 3.6 43 4 6 54 9.0 23 0
2007 89 373 4.2 26 3 3 25 8.3 21 0
2008 76 271 3.6 27 6 4 24 6.0 12 0
2009 282 1345 4.8 43 13 25 302 12.1 47 1


Professional career

2010 NFL Draft

Hardesty was picked in the 2nd round of the 2010 NFL Draft by the Cleveland Browns. Hardesty was expected to compete for the starting running back position for the Browns, but was limited in pre-season due to injury. On September 2, in his first pre-season game against the Chicago Bears, he[7] suffered a torn left ACL, sidelining him for the entire 2010 season.

Pre-draft measurables
Ht WtArm lengthHand size 40-yd dash 10-yd split 20-yd split 20-ss 3-cone Vert Broad BP
6 ft 0 in 225 lb31 in9 12 in 4.49 s 4.14 s 6.87 s 41 in 10 ft 4 in 21 reps
All values from NFL Combine [8]

2013 season

On August 27, 2013, Hardesty was placed on injured reserve, effectively ending his 2013 NFL season.[9] He was released on September 30, 2013.[10]


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