Japan: Fujitsu Frontiers RB Trashaun Nixon getting ready for playoffs

By Aidan Wohl

All eyes will be on Fujitsu Frontier running back Trashaun Nixon this Saturday when he and his team face the Asahi Beer Silver Star as the Frontiers kick off the XLeague playoffs. Fujitsu will be looking to defend their title and earn their fifth championship since 2016.

The last time Nixon and the Frontiers saw the Silver Star was Jan. 9, 2018, when they dominated them 48-7. In fact, Fujitsu has beaten the Silver Star in all three of their matchups since 2016.

Nixon, the 2018 XLeague MVP, has once again been dominant again this season, tallying 62 carries for 531 yards and six touchdowns as well as nine catches for 153 yards in only five games of action, and will look to bring his elusiveness and speed to the table come the playoffs.

The former starting linebacker at New Mexico State where he earned All-WAC second team honors as a senior, converted to running back upon arriving to play for Fujitsu in 2018 and has been a dominant force ever since in the Frontiers backfield. In that MVP year in 2018, he led the league in rushing with 817 yards and also led the league in scoring with 14 touchdowns.

The Oxnard, California native took the time to answer a few questions leading up to the quarterfinal clash.

Trashaun Nixon finding plenty of running room in win over Tokyo Gas Creators Photo: Fujitsu Frontiers


AFI: How does being a former linebacker help your game as a running back?

Nixon: Mentally it’s helped me a great deal. Being a former linebacker helps a lot when you’re talking about the way I can understand how to attack and adjust to certain run defenses. Also just remembering exactly what plays might be difficult from a linebackers perspective, to add that into me seeing it from a running back’s eyes helps me see the game a lot different at running back.

AFI: What do you expect from Asahi’s defense this Saturday?

Nixon: I expect Asahi’s defense to play very hard, they have some pretty well-known linebackers. And it is the playoffs, so I expect them to play hard.

AFI: What would another XLeague championship mean to you?

Nixon: Another championship would be a great accomplishment. …To be back-to-back champions in anything, is something to remember.”

AFI: How is the XLeague different than your days at New Mexico State?

Nixon: The X League is a lot different than playing at New Mexico State because every player was American in college.. but I can say the Japanese talent in the Xleague has improved greatly since I’ve been in the country. … I feel a couple of players in the X league could have played D1 if given the opportunity.

AFI: What’s the best part about playing in the Xleague and what did winning league MVP mean to you?

Nixon: The best part about the Xleague is you get to experience a whole different country and create lifelong friendships with people from way different backgrounds, while also getting paid to pay the game you love.

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