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Top Big Ten Rushers from Opening Week

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Top Big Ten Rushers Week One

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We all know about the dynamic quarterbacks that are receiving so much preseason attention in this year’s Big Ten Conference. Braxton Miller at Ohio State has helped lift the Buckeyes to an early No. 2 ranking and thrown himself in the mix for early Heisman trophy discussions. Taylor Martinez has already broken many Nebraska records for a quarterback and started and won his fourth season opener for the Huskers. Devin Gardner from Michigan is finally out of the long and exciting shadow of Denard Robinson and seems poised to lead his Wolverines through their Big Ten schedule.

Yes, quarterbacks have a knack for drawing a lot of attention and praise, and we have seen some fantastic quarterbacks play their college football in the Big Ten. That said it is paramount that we remember this is the Big Ten, and a solid running game is what gets a team through a very physical football season.

In the past we have seen amazing running backs come out of the Big Ten. There have been nine Heisman Trophy winning running backs come out of the Big Ten. Some of the all time greats include Bronko Nagurski from Minnesota, Ron Dayne from Wisconsin, Eddie George and Archie Griffin of Ohio State, Mike Hart of Michigan, and Red Grange from Illinois just to name a few. The addition of Nebraska to the conference greatly expands on his impressive list of outstanding collegiate running backs. Last year we saw Montee Ball expand upon an impressive career and add his name to the list. Here is a list of top rushers from week one to watch this season.

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Mark Weisman

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Weisman was the lone fullback to make the list this week. He rushed for an impressive 100 yards in a disappointing loss for the Hawkeyes to Northern Illinois. He averaged five yards per carry.

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Treyvon Green

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Green, the junior running back for Northwestern, had an impressive season opener rushing for 129 yards and scoring twice. He brings some much needed size to the Wildcat offense.

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Tevin Coleman

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This sophomore running back for Indiana led all rushers with 169 yards in the season opening victory over Indiana State. He also added two touchdowns. His big play abilities were evident as he averaged over 12 yards per carry. Coleman made the All-Big Ten freshman team a year ago.

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Jordan Hall

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This senior has been overshadowed by the presence of Braxton Miller in the backfield but proved on Saturday that he will be just as important for the Buckeyes' title hunt this season. Hall rushed for two touchdowns and 159 yards against Buffalo.

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Melvin Gordon

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This sophomore running back for Wisconsin scampered for 144 yards and a touchdown in the season opener out-gaining senior James White by one yard.

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James White

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This Badger senior is poised to take the bulk of the carries after Montee Ball's departure for the NFL, and in week one he amassed 143 yards and one touchdown in the victory of Massachusetts He is on the watch list for both the Maxwell Award and the Doak Walker Award.

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Corey Clement

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This true freshman for the Badgers showed that Wisconsin and Coach Anderson are set three deep at running back as he rushed for 101 yards and one touchdown in his debut.

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Ameer Abdullah

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This junior back for Nebraska came into the 2013 season with a very impressive list of accomplishments and some high hopes for the season as he was second team All-Big Ten running back a season ago. Abdullah certainly has home run ability, and we saw that week one when he took off on a 62-yard run against Wyoming. He finished the game with 114 yards rushing.

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Imani Cross

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The 6-foot-1 225-pound sophomore was supposed to be the bruiser in Nebraska’s one two punch in the backfield this season. In the season opener Cross came out leaner and quicker than expected rushing for 105 yards and two touchdowns against Wyoming.