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Just The Sports: The Best Rushing Backfield In The Nation

Just The Sports

Wednesday, December 06, 2006

The Best Rushing Backfield In The Nation

While everyone else wants to debate who is the best #2 team in the nation, there is a more important and serious question that deserves answering. That is, finding out which team has had the best rushing backfield in the nation during the college regular season. The finalists for this unsanctioned award are as follows: Darren McFadden and Felix Jones of Arkansas, C.J. Spiller and James Davis of Clemson, and Pat White and Steve Slaton of West Virginia. Though, each player on this list has had his share of spectacular runs, this award is not only concerned with highlight reel plays, but also consistency throughout the season down in and down out.

Coming in last place are the duo from the University of Arkansas, McFadden and Jones. If you are surprised to find them third on this last, join the party because I, too, have fallen prey to that nastiest of sports diseases. Namely, I assumed that since these two running backs, especially McFadden have received such national exposure, they were the best in the national. That is simply not the case. Even though their numbers are impressive, 53.6% success rate, 7.6 extra yards per successful run, and 3.4 yards needed per failed run do not quite measure up.

Second place requires us to travel farther north until we reach the state of West Virginia to run into Pat White and Steve Slaton. This duo, notable because it includes a quarterback, have the same success rate, 53.6%, as Arkansas' tandem. Where they have the advantage has been in the length of their successful runs, averaging 9.7 extra yards per. This makes up for the 4.6 yards needed per failed run, the highest of the three pairs.

Those who are master deducers have already figured out that C.J. Spiller & James Davis have won the award for best rushing backfield in the nation, but the reason why still must be given. They actually have not combined for as many long runs as White and Slaton; their 7.4 yards per successful run and 3.3 yards needed per failed run are more in line with McFadden and and Jones. But they have been the most consistent pair of the three with a 56.8% success rate, enough to make up for their lack of impressive runs and guaranteeing them the title that carries with it no honor and the award for which there is no corresponding trophy.



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