Breaking Down the SEC- Running Backs


Let’s look at the running back position for the SEC in 2012:

1. LSU– The Tigers have some really good, proven guys to handle the load and take some pressure off new QB Zach Mettenberger. The problem Les Miles has is getting carries for all of them- they literally have too much talent there. Micheal Ford, Spencer Ware, Kenny Hilliard, and Alfred Blue. (1st on ESPN, 3rd by Steele)

2. South Carolina– I’m putting SC 2nd with the expectation that Marcus Lattimore is healthy and ready to roll full speed by late September at the latest. He is one of the nation’s best RB’s when healthy. Catches the ball out of the backfield well also. Brandon Wilds and Kenny Miles have experience as they took over the load last year when Lattimore got hurt. (2nd by ESPN, 1st by Steele)

3. Arkansas– Another team hoping their best RB can return smoothly from injury. Knile Davis is one of the SEC’s best when healthy and is tough to bring down at 225 pounds. Dennis Johnson and Ronnie Wingo are very capable back-ups. (3rd by ESPN and tied for 3rd by Steele)

4. Alabama– Eddie Lacy takes over for Trent Richardson in T-Town. The Tide are not as good at RB as they have been the last few years, but they wont be bad at all. Dee Hart is recovering from an injury and TJ Yeldon is a true freshman- but both are very talented. Lots of talent but unproven so far for the Tide in 2012. (4th by ESPN and 7th by Steele)

5. State– Outsiders will call this a homer ranking, and based on actual production to this point they would be correct. But the ability that State has in their backfield this season is outstanding. LsDarius Perkins is the starter and has proven big play ability. He will be joined by Nick Griffen and electric R-Freshman Josh Robinson. State always puts a good RB on the field- and 2012 will be no exception. (7th by ESPN, 11th by Steele)

6. Vandy– Zac Stacy is the SEC’s leading returning rusher after setting records for Vandy last season. He has some decent back-ups in Warren Norman and Jerron Seymour. True Freshman Brian Kimbrow could make an impact also. (6th by ESPN, 5th by Steele)

7. Texas A&M– Yet another SEC school counting on a RB returning from injury. Christine Micheal rushed for 900 yards last season before getting hurt. If he returns full speed A&M will be in good shape. They are waiting to see if Oklahoma transfer Brandon Williams gets a waiver to be immediately eligible. If he does, this 5-star talent gives them one of the top backfields in the league. (5th by ESPN and Steele)

8. Auburn– the War Eagle/Tigers/Plainsmen suffered a blow when standout Micheal Dyer transferred to Arkansas State to follow OC Gus Malzahn. (He has since decided to transfer to Pittsburg State to play D-II ball).  Onterio McCalebb returns as a home run threat but he is not an every down RB. They will also count on Tre Mason, Mike Blakely, and Corey Grant. (9th by ESPN, 8th by Steele)

9. Georgia– the Bulldogs suffered a huge blow when talented starter Isaiah Crowell got booted out of school on a weapons charge. Ken Malcome should be the guy that takes over, and he will be joined by freshmen Keith Marshall and Todd Gurley. (8th by ESPN)

10. Tennessee– this group struggled to run the ball last season. They feel like 2012 will see improvement. Rajion Neal is the starter and he is backed up by Marlin Lane and Devrin Young. (12 by ESPN, 10th by Steele)

11. Missouri– Mizzou better hope these guys are ready to play big boy football. They have had alot of injuries to the RB’s and they need these guys to get healthy enough to take an SEC beating. Kendial Lawrence, Marcus Murphy, and Jared McGriff-Culver will run the rock for them in 2012. (10th ESPN, 12 Steele)

12. Florida– hard to believe a Florida team doesnt have the talent it’s used to seeing at RB- but in 2012 that is definitely the case. Senior Mike Gillislee is the starter- hardly a name that SEC defenses fear. Mack Brown and Hunter Joyer join him. (11th by ESPN, 8th by Steele- wtf again Steele????)

13. Kentucky– poor Joker- he gets everyone back- but that’s not necessarily a good thing. CoShik Williams was the leading rusher, and Josh Williams should return from injury to help out. (13th ESPN, 14th by Steele)

14. Mississippi– the only decent RB they have returning is Jeff Scott. Scott guaranteed a win over State in the Egg Bowl last season- or he would give up his scholarship to a homeless man. State went on to drub Mississippi in the Egg Bowl and Scott attempted to find a homeless man to give his scholly to. Sadly, there were no takers, as they all said they weren’t stupid enough to run behind that OL Mississippi will put on the field in 2012. Devin Thomas and H.R. Greer join him in the backfield. Tobias Manning makes the move from WR to RB also to get a taste of the good life that is Mississippi football. (14th ESPN, 13th by Steele)