Here are the Top Ten Running Backs in the Big Ten in my opinion. They are listed in the order that I believe are the best of the ten first.
Melvin Gordon- Wisconsin
Kenosha born Gordon has had an outstanding career at Wisconsin. He is the fastest player in Wisconsin history to reach 1,000 career rushing yards (104 attempts) and owns more runs of 20-plus yards (24) than negative yards (19) in his career. Also, he has accumulated 16 career rushing touchdowns have covered an average of 29.8 yards. Gordon’s only lost fumble in career came on lateral play in 2014 Capital One Bowl as he has never lost a fumble across 288 rushing attempts, 3 receptions or 8 kickoff returns (299 total touches) At Wisconsin, he ranks No. 13 in history with 2,328 career rushing yards and owns 10 career 100-yard games, including nine of 140-plus yards.
He ranked 10th in the country and second in the Big Ten with 1,609 rushing yards, setting a UW sophomore record and scored 12 rushing TDs. Also, he led the nation and set UW single-season record at 7.8 yards per attempt which is just the sixth player in UW history to rush for more than 1,600 yards in a season and the only player in the country to have three runs of at least 70 yards. Gordon tied for the most runs of at least 60 yards (4) of any FBS player and rushed for at least 140 yards in 8 of Wisconsin’s 13 games in 2013.
Ameer Abdullah- Nebraska
The 5’9” 195 lbs. senior from Alabama will complete his final season of eligibility with some fantastic numbers to his credit. Last season, Abdullah ran for 1,690 yards and nine touchdowns on 281 carries. Abdullah topped 100 yards in 11 of 13 games, including a career-high 225 yards against Illinois. He had a streak of eight straight games with 100 yards, and topped 85 yards in all 13 games.
He averaged 130.0 rushing yards per game to rank second in the Big Ten and seventh nationally. In conference games, he was even better, averaging 137.9 yards per game to again rank second in the conference.
Abdullah was also Nebraska’s third-leading receiver with 26 receptions for 232 yards and two touchdowns. His all-around ability placed him first in the conference and 13th nationally in all-purpose yards per game, averaging 153.8 yards per game.
He also averaged 6.0 yards per carry and carried the ball more than 20 times nine times in 2013, including each of the final six games. While showing the ability to carry a heavy load, Abdullah also provided a big-play threat in the running game. He had eight runs of 30 yards or more, ranking among the national leaders in that category.
Jeremy Langford- Michigan State
The fifth year senior returns for his final season after spending time for the Spartans at several positions in his career. Now going into his second season as running back, Langford has recorded some outstanding numbers from his 2013 season. He started all 14 games at tailback during a breakout season in 2013 in which he led the team in rushing yards (1,422), carries (292), total touchdowns (19), rushing touchdowns (18), scoring (114 points) and all-purpose yards (1,579) . Langford also led Big Ten in total touchdowns (19) and carries (292) .and was ranked among the FBS leaders in rushing yards (16th with 1,422) and rushing (27th with 101.6 ypg.) He ended the season also ranked among the Big Ten leaders in scoring (third with 8.1 ppg.), rushing yards (fifth with 1,422), rushing (sixth with 101.6 ypg.) and all-purpose yards (eighth with 112.8 ypg.).
Tevin Coleman- Indiana
A Tinley Park, Illinois native, he left the state and found plenty of playing time for the Hoosiers. His 2013 season was tremendous as he rushed for 958 yards on 131 carries (7.3 average) with 12 touchdowns and caught 19 passes for 193 yards, returned six kicks for 124 yards and finished with 1,275 all-purpose yards. He also averaged 106.4 rushing yards and 141.7 all-purpose yards per game and started the first nine games of the season and missed the final three due to an ankle injury. Coleman tied for second in the Big Ten (T-14th nationally) in yards per attempt, third (22nd) in all-purpose yards per game, tied for third in total yards per play (7.3, T-26th), fourth (T-20th) in yards from scrimmage per game (127.9), fifth in rushing yards per game (22nd) and scoring per game (8.0), tied for fifth in rushing TDs and tied for sixth in total scores.
David Cobb- Minnesota
Hailing from Killeen Texas, this senior running back has an outstanding 2013 season as he led team in rushing with 1,202 yards (12th all-time in program history and 27th in the nation last season) on 237 carries (10th all-time in program history and 18th in the nation last season) and became the first Gopher to rush for more than 1,000 yards since Amir Pinnix in 2006 (1,272 yards) He tied for team lead in touchdowns with seven (all rushing) and finished season with 1,376 all-purpose yards (1,202 rushing and 174 receiving), which is the most for a Gopher since 2009 (most for a running back since 2006) and is tied for 16th all-time in program history Elliott had six 100-yard rushing games (team was 5-1), which was the most by a Gopher since Laurence Maroney had eight in 2005 He rushed for more than 100 yards in wins against Northwestern, Nebraska, Indiana and Penn State.
The other top performers for 2014:
Ezekiel Elliott- Ohio State
Josh Ferguson- Illinois
Corey Clement- Wisconsin
Mark Weisman- Iowa
Raheem Mostert- Purdue