The Big 10: RBs
Last week we looked at the top quarterbacks in the conference. This week we take a peak at running backs, where a Michigan man takes top billing again. Check back next Monday for my wide receiver rankings.
1. Mike Hart, Michigan: Can't argue with production. Hart's rushed for nearly 3,700 yards in his first three seasons and it's not unreasonable to believe he can end his career third on the yardage chart. With a good season, he has all the makings of a Heisman finalist.
2. P.J. Hill, Wisconsin: The seventh freshman in NCAA history to top the 1,500-yard mark, Hill is the biggest reason to believe the Badgers can challenge Michigan for Big Ten supremacy. He's a 5-foot-11, 222-pound bowling ball who scored 16 touchdowns last year.
3. Chris Wells, Ohio State: Wells has 102 career carries, but anyone who saw him in the final month of the regular season knows what a beast he is. On talent alone, he'd be atop this list but let's make sure he can handle a season-long pounding before anointing him the second coming.
4. Tyrell Sutton, Northwestern: The Big Ten Freshmen of the Year two years ago, Sutton had a disappointing 2006. He rushed for only 1,000 yards and five touchdowns, and did not crack the 100-yard mark until an October loss to Michigan State. Things are more settled around him this year, and Sutton will be back to his unstoppable self.
5. Javon Ringer, Michigan State: There's worthy No. 5 candidates in just about every Big Ten backfield. Kory Sheets, Amir Pinnix, Albert Young. Ringer has more upside than all of them and should get a chance to shine in MSU's new pro-style offense. As long as he's healthy, he's a good bet for 20 carries a game and perhaps 1,200 yards.