1) Todd Gurley, Georgia: Todd Gurley is one of the elite running backs in all of College Football. As a Freshman in 2012, he awoke comparisons to Georgia legend Herschel Walker after he rushed for 1,385 yards and 17 touchdowns. As a Sophomore last season his production slipped and he missed three games due to injury. Veteran Quarterback Aaron Murray is gone now but you can expect the bulldogs to lean on Gurley and the running game very heavily. Gurley will also step into the role of leader and captain for the Georgia offense. Gurley has an excellent blend of power and speed, he’s also capable of catching the ball out of the backfield when necessary.
2) Jeremy Langford, Michigan State: Jeremy Langford is coming off a season where he lead Michigan State to a Rose Bowl Victory over Standford. Last year the Langford touched the ball over 300 times on offense, he was Head Coach’s Mark Dantonio’s cowbell last season. A year ago Langford was a bit of an unknown for the Spartans but this year he’s coming in as a proven commodity. As a Junior, Langford rushed for 1,422 yards and 18 touchdowns on 292 carries. As he enters his Senior season, he will be called on again to help the reigning Big 10 Champions defend their crown. Langford will also be on many people’s list for the Heisman Trophy in 2014.
3) Ameer Abdullah, Nebraska: Ameer Abdullah plays much bigger than his 5’9, 190 lbs frame. He may be small but he plays big. Abdullah is coming off a Junior campaign in which he rushed for 1,690 yards and 9 touchdowns. Abdullah earned 1st team All-Big 10 Honors and was one of the leading rushers in the Big 10. Abdullah is very adept at making defenders miss in the hole and has excellent vision in the open field. With young Tommy Armstrong set to take over as Quarterback, look for Abdullah to be the Nebraska’s go option offensively this coming fall.
4) Melvin Gordon, Wisconsin: Melvin Gordon is next in line when it comes to running backs at Wisconsin. Last year he wrestled the starting tailback job away from James White and never looked back. He began the 2013 season, with four straight 100 yard games and took the Big 10 Conference by storm. This year there is no reason why he can’t have the same impact in 2014 just as he did in 2013. Gordon finished last season with 1,609 yards and 12 touchdowns. He’s already one the top prospects going into this season and behind the leadership of Gordon and Quarterback Joel Stave look for Wisconsin to have one of the best offenses in the Big 10.
5) Thomas Tyner, Oregon: 2014 is being hyped as “Tyner Time” and just the Oregon Duck fan base I’m all in. Thomas Tyner gave us a small sample of what he could do in his Freshman Season in 2013. He rushed for 711 yards and 9 touchdowns. A season ago he split carries with De’Anthony Thomas and Byron Marshall. De’Anthony Thomas is now in the NFL and Thomas Tyner seems poised to be the go back for Oregon in 2014. Look for Tyner’s production to double this season. He has great speed and once he gets a full of steam its over. Thomas Tyner will be one of the breakout running backs of 2014.