Making this list was extremely difficult. I left off about 15 players who have a viable argument to be in the Top 25. That being said, these are the top of the class for G5 running backs. Who could be the next Marshall Faulk, a running back from a G5 school that becomes an NFL superstar? They could very well be on this list.
1. Kenneth Gainwell – Memphis
Gainwell established himself as one of the top RBs in CFB last season. He rushed for 1,459 yards and 13 touchdowns, while averaging 6.3 YPC. Gainwell was also productive in the passing game with 610 rec yards and 3 touchdowns.
2. Jaret Patterson – Buffalo
Patterson is one of the best RBs returning in all of CFB. In his career, he’s rushed for 2,777 yards and 33 touchdowns, averaging 5.7 yards per carry. He’s also a good receiving back with 271 receiving yards and 1 TD. He’s a future NFL star.
3. Elijah Mitchell – Louisiana
Mitchell is one of the top returning RBs in CFB in 2020. He’s rushed for 2,389 yards and 33 touchdowns, averaging 6.2 yards per carry in his career. He’s also caught 33 passes for 444 yards and 5 TDs in his career as well.
4. Otis Anderson – UCF
Anderson is an APB who is very versatile. He has a punt return TD, 77 receptions for 946 yards and 9 touchdowns, and 1,495 rushing yards and 13 touchdowns in his career. Anderson is a major weapon, and the Knights will get him the ball as much as possible.
5. Ronnie Rivers – Fresno State
Rivers is one of the best RBs in CFB that’s under the radar. In his career, he’s rushed for 2,122 yards and 28 touchdowns, while averaging 5.2 yards per carry. He also has 89 receptions for 792 yards and 7 touchdowns.
6. Bryant Koback – Toledo
Koback is another RBs that’s under the radar. He’s rushed for 2,104 yards and 26 touchdowns in his career and averaged 6 yards per carry.
7. Brenden Knox – Marshall
Knox was the 2019 C-USA Most Valuable Player. He rushed for 1,387 yards and 11 TDs last season, and has 1,965 rushing yards, and 15 rushing touchdowns in his career.
8. George Holani – Boise State
Holani had a breakout season in 2019 as a Freshman. He rushed for 1,014 yards and 7 touchdowns and averaged 5.3 yards per carry. He’s also a threat out of the backfield receiving with 206 rec yards and 3 TDs.
9. Trey Ragas – Louisiana
Ragas and Mitchell are an elite duo at RB. Ragas has rushed for 2,814 yards and 28 touchdowns in his career, while averaging 6.1 yards per carry. He’s also a weapon receiving with 3 touchdowns.
10. Charles Williams – UNLV
Williams is a player every CFB fan should know about. Especially, Cal, ASU, and ISU fans, since those teams play the Rebels this season. Williams has rushed for 2,445 yards and 15 TDs in his career, averaging 5.7 yards per carry.
11. Josh Johnson – ULM
Johnson had a big season in 2019 rushing for 1,298 yards and 11 touchdowns, while averaging 6.5 yards per carry. The Warhawks must replace former QB Caleb Evans, who gradated. So Johnson could get a bigger workload in 2020.
12. Spencer Brown – UAB
Brown had a down season in 2019 with just 566 yards, averaging 3.8 ypc because he was dealing with injuries. In his career, Brown has rushed for 3,122 yards and 31 touchdowns, averaging 4.6 yards per carry.
13. Xazavian Valladay – Wyoming
Valladay had a big season in 2019. He rushed for 1,661 yards and 9 touchdowns, averaging 5.2 yards per carry. He was also dangerous in the passing attack with 246 receiving yards and 2 TDs.
14. Greg McCrae – UCF
McCrae has 1,859 rushing yards and 19 rushing TDs, averaging 7.3 yards per carry in his career. McCrae also has 19 receptions for 193 yards and 1 TD.
15. Jamale Carothers – Navy
Carothers had a big 2019 season and established himself as one of the top RBs in the AAC. Last season, he rushed for 734 yards and 14 touchdowns, averaging 6.6 ypc. He also added 2 receiving TDs.
16. Marcel Murray – Arkansas State
Murray is a player I’ve raved about many times on here. He’s a spectacular player who has 1,680 rushing yards and 14 touchdowns in his career, and has also caught 31 passes for 266 yards and 2 TDs in his career.
17. Caleb Huntley – Ball State
Huntley has rushed for 2,465 yards and 15 touchdowns, averaging 5 yards per carry in his career. He’s been a workhorse back for the Cardinals, and should have another big season in 2020.
18. Sincere McCormick – UTSA
McCormick was one of the Top Freshmen RBs in CFB last season. He earned Freshman All-America honors after rushing for 983 yards and 8 touchdowns, while averaging 5.6 yards per carry. Remember the name!
19. Kobe Lewis – CMU
Lewis was phenomenal in 2019, rushing for 1,074 yards and 12 touchdowns, while averaging 5.9 yards per carry. Lewis also caught 23 passes for 164 yards. He’s one of the best in the MAC.
20. Justin Henderson – LA Tech
Henderson has 1,175 career rushing yards, averaging 5.4 yards per carry with 15 touchdowns. He is also a receiving threat with 214 receiving yds and 1 TD.
21. CJ Marable – Coastal Carolina
Marable had a huge season in 2019 and established himself as one of the top RBs in the G5. He rushed for 1,085 yards and 11 touchdowns.
22. Wesley Kennedy III – Georgia Southern
Kennedy should be mentioned amongst the top RBs in the G5. He rushed for 824 yards and 11 touchdowns last season. He’s rushed for 1,427 yards in his career, averaging an outstanding 7.5 yards per carry.
23. Tre Harbison – Charlotte
• Harbison started his career at UVA & Transferred to NIU. In his time @ NIU he rushed for 2,345 yards 16 Touchdowns averaging 4.8 yards per carry. The 49ers Offense could be high scoring in 2020 & Harbison will be a key piece.
24. Kadin Remsberg – Air Force
• Remsberg was the MVP of the Cheez-It Bowl vs Washington State last season. In his career he’s rushed for 1,633 yards 11 Touchdowns averaging 5.8 yards per carry. He’s a tough running back with good vision.
25. Gerrid Doaks – Cincinnati
• Doaks has rushed for 1,039 yards 7 Touchdowns in his career while averaging 5.6 yards per carry. Doaks is also a threat in the passing game with 22 receptions for 205 yards 2 Touchdowns.
- Johnny Ford – USF
- Mulbah Car – Houston
- Corey Dauphine – Tulane
- Malcolm Davidson – FAU
- D’vonte Price – FIU
- Gaej Walker – WKU
- DeAndre Torrey – North Texas
- Kevin Marks – Buffalo
- Marcus Williams – Appalachian State
- B.J. Smith – Troy
- Kevin Mensah – UConn
- Joshua Mack – Liberty
- Re’mahn Davis – Temple
- Shamari Brooks – Tulsa