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Best Razorback Running Backs Ever: Year 1 to Year 2 Edition Best Razorback Running Backs Ever: Year 1 to Year 2 Edition
The Arkansas Razorback football program has produced a constellation of stars who have each rocked the gridiron for well over 1,000 yards in a... Best Razorback Running Backs Ever: Year 1 to Year 2 Edition

The Arkansas Razorback football program has produced a constellation of stars who have each rocked the gridiron for well over 1,000 yards in a season.

Only a small percentage of them burst onto the scene in a major way as first-year players. Those who did (e.g. Darren McFadden, Alex Collins) tended to break major program records later in their career.

But most of these great Razorback running backs had more modest Year 1’s before ramping up their production by a factor of two or three in Year 2. Who had the most dramatic ramp ups between what was usually a freshman season and sophomore season?

Below is a list of the best Razorback running backs in terms of yards in a single season:

Via ArkansasRazorbacks.com

Looking at these record breakers, plus Felix Jones, I list below who had the most dramatic Season 1-to-Season 2 increases:

9. Alex Collins (2013-2015)

Increase: 7%

First season with Razorbacks (2013)

Rushing Yards: 1026

Yards Per Carry: 5.4

Rushing TDs: 4

Second season with Razorbacks (2014)

Rushing Yards: 1100

Yards Per Carry: 5.4

Rushing TDs: 12

8. Dickey Morton (1971-1973)

Increase: 43%

First season with Razorbacks (1971) *as sophomore 

Rushing Yards: 831

Yards Per Carry: 6.5

Rushing TDs: 5

Second season with Razorbacks (1972)

Rushing Yards: 1188

Yards Per Carry: 4.9

Rushing TDs: 6

7. Darren McFadden (2005-2007)

Increase: 48%

First season with Razorbacks (2005)

Rushing Yards: 1113

Yards Per Carry: 6.3

Rushing TDs: 11

Second season with Razorbacks (2006)

Rushing Yards: 1647

Yards Per Carry: 5.8

Rushing TDs: 14

6. Felix Jones (2005-2007)

Increase: 87%

First season with Razorbacks (2005)

Rushing Yards: 626

Yards Per Carry: 6.3

Rushing TDs: 3

Second season with Razorbacks (2006)

Rushing Yards: 1168

Yards Per Carry: 7.6

Rushing TDs: 6

5. Jonathan Williams (2012-2015)

Increase: 290%

First season with Razorbacks (2012):

Rushing Yards: 231

Yards Per Carry: 5.1

Rushing TDs: 0

Second season with Razorbacks (2013):

Rushing Yards: 900

Yards Per Carry: 6.0

Rushing TDs: 4

4. Madre Hill (1994-1998)

Increase: 295%

First season with Razorbacks (1994)

Rushing Yards: 351

Yards Per Carry: 4.7

Rushing TDs: 3

Second season with Razorbacks (1995)

Rushing Yards: 1387

Yards Per Carry: 4.5

Rushing TDs: 15

3. Raleigh Williams III (third, naturally)

Increase: 435%

First season with Razorbacks (2015)

Rushing Yards: 254

Yards Per Carry: 4.5

Rushing TDs: 1

Second season with Razorbacks (2016)

Rushing Yards: 1360

Yards Per Carry: 5.6

Rushing TDs: 12

2. Ben Cowins (1975-1978)

Increase: 453%

First season with Razorbacks (1975): 

Rushing Yards: 210

Yards Per Carry: 4.8

Rushing TDs: 3

Second season with Razorbacks (1976): 

Rushing Yards: 1162

Yards Per Carry: 6.3

Rushing TDs: 7

  1. Knile Davis (2009-2012)

Increase 711%

First season with Razorbacks (2009)

Rushing Yards: 163

Yards Per Carry: 4.9

Rushing TDs: 4

Second season with Razorbacks (2010)

Rushing Yards: 1322

Yards Per Carry: 6.5

Rushing TDs: 13

***

Rakeem Boyd (2018 – ????)

Increase: ???

First season with Razorbacks 

Rushing Yards: 734

Yards Per Carry: 6

Rushing TDs: 2

Second season with Razorbacks:

Rushing Yards:

Yards Per Carry: 

Rushing TDs:

*Cedric Cobbs burst out on the scene as a freshman in 1999 with 668 yards and a 5.8 yards per carry rushing average. He was on track for a great sophomore season but injuries derailed him that season and the following few years.

Eventually, he came back strong with a 1320-yard senior year in 2003.


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