Arkansas took a big hit Monday when junior running back Rawleigh Williams III announced he was walking away from football for health reasons. Williams and sophomore Devwah Whaley would’ve given the Hogs a dynamic running back duo, one in which both backs had 1,000-yard potential.
A strong argument could’ve been made that the Williams-Whaley combo would’ve been one of the five or six best in the nation.
Thing is, even without that pairing, the SEC will be filled with good — really, really good — running back duos this season. Again, a strong argument can be made that even without the Arkansas group, the SEC will have four of the top 10 running back duos in the nation — and eight of the top 20 or so.
Here are the top eight. (While every SEC team will — or, at least, should — have a legit feature back, we didn’t feel comfortable enough with the backups for the remaining six teams to rank them.)
8. South Carolina
The duo: Rico Dowdle and either A.J. Turner or Ty’Son Williams
The skinny: Actually, it could be any combination of the three. Williams, a North Carolina transfer, had a good spring and is going to play; how much is the key. Dowdle led the team in rushing last season and has a burst. Turner had his moments last season, too. This is a solid group that needs the o-line to play better than it did last season.
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