Doak Walker Award semifinalists include ASU’s Benjamin, UA’s Taylor
Sophomore running backs Eno Benjamin of Arizona State and J.J. Taylor of Arizona are among 10 finalists for the 2018 Doak Walker Award, the PwC SMU Athletic Forum announced Wednesday.
The award is given to college football’s best running back.
Benjamin has tallied 1,295 yards and 5.7 yards per carry with 12 touchdowns through 10 games for the Sun Devils this season. He is playing for the first time in a significant role after taking only 23 carries for 142 yards (6.2 yards per rush) as a freshman last season.
The 5-foot-10 back has already surpassed ASU’s single-season rushing yardage record in the Pac-10/12 era and set the single-game rushing total of 312 yards against Oregon State.
For Arizona, Taylor has recorded 1,221 on 5.9 yards per carry with six scores on the ground.
He’s in his third year after he was granted a medical redshirt due to a season-ending injury early in 2016. The 5-foot-6 back from Corona, Calif., has already surpassed his single-season rushing mark from 2017, when he rushed for 847 yards and five touchdowns.
Three finalists will be named for the Doak Walker Award on Nov. 19, and a winner will be announced during the College Football Awards on Thursday, Dec. 6.
Benjamin and Taylor are joined on the semifinalist list by Boston College sophomore A.J. Dillon, Clemson sophomore Travis Etienne, Memphis junior Darrell Henderson, Michigan senior Karan Higdon, Kentucky junior Benny Snell, Florida Atlantic junior Devin Singletary, Wisconsin sophomore Jonathan Taylor and Texas A&M junior Trayveon Williams.