Robbie Rouse on the move again, waived by Cleveland Browns

Robbie Rouse turns the corner on a Cal defender to score a touchdown in Fresno State’s 2012 season-opener at Candlestick Park.

Robbie Rouse, the all-time rushing leader in Fresno State history with 4,647 yards, is learning life in the NFL isn’t easy.

The 5-foot-6 running back was waived by the Cleveland Browns on Tuesday, not even two weeks after he was signed as an undrafted free agent.

Rouse was a first-team all-Mountain West Conference selection as a senior, helping lead the Bulldogs to their first conference championship since 1999. He averaged 114.6 yards per game, third best in the conference, and also  had 1,925 all-purpose yards to rank second.



Record-setting Rouse signs as undrafted free agent with Cleveland Browns

Record-setting Fresno State running back signed a contract with the Cleveland Browns on Saturday as an undrafted free agent and was on-hand for the second of their three mini-camp practices this weekend.

Here is an interview Rouse did on the Browns’ website.

The Bulldogs’ all-time rushing leader had participated in a mini camp with the Minnesota Vikings last week before signing with the Browns.



Fresno State/NFL catch-up: Thomas drafted, five others to rookie mini-camps

Robbie Rouse, the Fresno State record-holder for career rushing yards with 4,647, has been invited to the Minnesota Vikings’ rookie mini-camp in May.

Fresno State safety Phillip Thomas was the only Bulldogs player selected in the NFL Draft, going to the Washington Redskins in the fourth round. But five other players have been invited to mini-camps, which will be held May 3-5 or May 10-12.

Running back Robbie Rouse, the Bulldogs’ all-time rushing leader, will be in camp with the Minnesota Vikings.

Wide out Rashad Evans and linebacker/safety Shawn Plummer will be going to camp with the Atlanta Falcons.

Outside linebacker Tristan Okpalaugo will be in camp with the Miami Dolphins and punter Andrew Shapiro with the Houston Texas.




NFL Combine invites Fresno State’s Rouse, Thomas along with McDonald, Bray, Jefferson and Wilson

Fresno State senior running back Robbie Rouse enters Bulldog Stadium before the Bulldogs’ game against Air Force on Nov. 24, 2012. (CRAIG KOHLRUSS/THE FRESNO BEE)

Running back Robbie Rouse — Fresno State’s all-time leading rusher — and safety Phillip Thomas – a unanimous All-American at safety this past fall for the Bulldogs — have been invited to the NFL Combine, scheduled for Feb. 20-26 in Indianapolis.

USC All-America safety T.J. McDonald from Edison High also was invited.

In addition, three juniors with ties to the Fresno area earned invitations: Tennessee quarterback Tyler Bray from Kingsburg High, Nevada running back Stefphon Jefferson from El Diamante High and former Washington State wide receiver Marquess Wilson out of Tulare High.

Here is the schedule of workouts, with coverage on the NFL Network:

** Saturday, Feb. 23: Tight ends, offensive linemen, special teams.

** Sunday, Feb. 24: Quarterbacks, running backs, wide receivers.

** Monday, Feb. 25: Defensive linemen, linebackers.

** Tuesday, Feb. 26: Defensive backs.

Bulldogs’ Rouse and Okpalaugo to play in NFLPA Collegiate Bowl

Fresno State running back Robbie Rouse and outside linebacker Tristan Okpalaugo will play in the NFL Players Association Collegiate Bowl, getting a chance to audition for coaches and scouts.

The game will be played on Jan. 19 at the Home Depot Center in Carson and be televised by ESPN2. Kickoff for the game will be 3 p.m. ESPNU also will cover practices on Jan. 17. Herm Edwards and Dick Vermeil are the coaches for the game.

The 5-foot-7 Rouse is the Bulldogs’ all-time leading rusher with 4,647 yards and holds nine other school records. He also was a first-team all-Mountain West Conference selection as a senior, helping lead the Bulldogs to a 9-4 season and loss to Southern Methodist in the Hawaii Bowl.

Okpalaugo, a former walk-on, was in on 53 tackles with 11.5 for loss including four sacks. He had one interception, which he returned 21 yards for a touchdown in a loss at Tulsa.


Fresno State claims all three player of year awards in Mountain West Conference

Fresno State quarterback Derek Carr was selected as the Mountain West Conference offensive player of the year, strong safety Phillip Thomas as the defensive player of the year and Davante Adams as freshman of the year, the first time in history that one school has swept all three awards.

Carr led the league in completions, completion percentage, passing yards and passing touchdowns and is the first Bulldogs’ player to be   a offensive player of the year since his brother, David, was the Western Athletic Conference award in 2001.

Thomas, who led the MWC with eight interceptions and returned three for touchdowns, is the 10th player from Fresno State to be selected as a defensive player of the year, the most recent Chris Carter in 2010.

Adams, who led the league in receptions and receiving yards and touchdown receptions, is the third freshman from Fresno State to win the award and the first since Ryan Wendell in 2004.

Seven Bulldogs were selected to the conference first team in a vote of coaches and media that covers the league – Carr, Thomas, Adams, running back Robbie Rouse, offensive tackle Austin Wentworth, nose guard Tyeler Davison and safety Derron Smith.

Mike linebacker Travis Brown and defensive end Andy Jennings are on the second team, while cornerbacks Sean Alston and L.J. Jones, receiver Isaiah Burse, center Richard Helepiko, tight end Marcel Jensen and punter Andrew Shapiro gained honorable mention.

Career milestones will set the Bulldogs’ Robbie Rouse apart

Robbie Rouse already has set a Fresno State record for career rushing yards and is one of the most prolific running backs in school history. He holds or has a share of eight schools records, and on Saturday against Hawaii will become the first Bulldogs’ back to put together three 1,000-yard seasons.

He is sitting on 999 yards. ‘’I think he’ll get it,’’ Coach Tim DeRuyter joked.

But Rouse also is close to two career milestones that will be a separator years down the line when debating the merits of Fresno State running backs – with 96 receptions he is four short of 100 and he is just 155 all-purpose yards from joining Bernard Berrian as the only Bulldogs to top 5,000.

With 49 receptions just this season, Rouse already has more than Ryan Mathews (19) had in his Fresno State career and almost as many as Ron Rivers (56) and Dwayne Wright (51) had in theirs; Mathews, Rivers and Wright ranking third, fifth and second on the Bulldogs’ career rushing list.

‘’He’s done a great job,’’ offensive coordinator Dave Schramm said. ‘’It was one of the aspects I wanted to gain, to show people we have a back and you don’t have to just worry about him I the run game he’s going to catch the ball out of the backfield. We’ve designed some things to get him the ball, some screens and things like that, but a lot of times they’re just check downs.

‘’That guy in the open field, in space, when they’re covering our receivers down the field, that’s critical for us. That’s been a great aspect to the offense so far this year.

‘’We’re seeing some teams that want to drop eight guys and play a lot more pass defense, but they always have to know where he is. I mean, you can drop it down to him and a 2-yard pass can turn into a 25-yard play just because he’s so good with the ball in his hands.’’