Curtis Dukes adds another dimension to the Nittany Lions' running game with his physical, hard-charging style. He took significant steps forward last year and is looking to play an even bigger role with the offense this fall. The athletic, tough and physical Dukes is a downhill runner with great size and strength and is coming off the best campaign of his career. A redshirt junior, Dukes was third on the team with 237 yards and an impressive 5.8 yards per carry average in 2011. The punishing runner also scored his first career touchdown and caught two passes for 18 yards. Dukes played an integral role in helping the Nittany Lions start the conference season at Indiana. The former Indian River High School standout ran for a then-career-high 54 yards to help lead the Lions. He then rewrote his career-best with 60 yards in the matchup against Iowa. Dukes did not participate in spring practice to focus on academics, but he was on campus and worked out with his teammates during the summer. Dukes is one of six returning Nittany Lions from New York.
2011 Junior Season
Dukes was instrumental in helping Penn State burst to a solid Big Ten start and eventually earn a share of the first Leaders Division title. He was third on the team with 237 yards on 41 carries for an impressive 5.8 yards per carry average. He also scored his first touchdown and caught two passes for 18 yards. In the conference-opener at Indiana, Dukes logged career-highs in carries (9) and yards (54). The following week against Iowa, he again had nine carries and rewrote his career-high with 60 yards, helping Penn State rush for 231 yards in the Big Ten battle with the Hawkeyes. In the Leaders Division matchup against Purdue, he scored his first career touchdown on a one-yard run, gaining 21 yards on six carries. Against Indiana State, Dukes had a career-long 30-yard rush and gained 47 yards on six carries. He carried the ball six times for 25 yards in the regular-season finale at Wisconsin and grabbed his first reception, good for 17 yards, against Eastern Michigan. Dukes saw action on a season-high 20 plays in the Leaders Division battle at Indiana.
2010 Sophomore Season
In his first season on the field, Dukes made the most of his two carries, gaining 11 yards on a burst in the win over Indiana. He also had a five-yard carry against Youngstown State, as Penn State's career rushing attempts and yardage leader, Evan Royster, completed his career.
2009 Freshman Season
Dukes earned all-state honors playing for Coach Cory Marsell at Indian River HS. He ran for 1,168 yards on just 87 carries, for an impressive 13.4 average, and 16 touchdowns as a senior.
Full name is Curtis Dajon Dukes Jr. He is the son of DeFrance Dukes. He has two brothers and three sisters. Relative Greg Oden played basketball at Ohio State and is a member of the Portland Trailblazers. Off the field, Dukes enjoys spending time with his family, lifting weights and listening to music. He is enrolled in the crime, law and justice major. Born February 3, 1991 in Fort Ord, Calif.