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Top 10 Best Running Backs in College Football 2023-2024 Rankings

Ranking the best Running Backs in College Football for the 2023 NCAA season as Ollie Gordon II of the Oklahoma State Cowboys leads the way

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By admin | December 18, 2023

The history of game changing running backs at college football stems back for years and years as many great running backs have graced the college football fields. The same can be said for the current class of top running backs that continue to get stronger, faster, and more versatile while delivering their teams big time playmakers that can do everything. That is the case with the Oklahoma State Cowboys running back Ollie Gordon II who led the nation in rushing yards while landing him at the top of the Top 10 Best Running Backs in College Football 2023 Rankings list.

Gordon II who is in his sophomore season with the Cowboys put together a strong performance all season long while being a key part of both the team’s rushing attack as well as passing attack.

As Gordon II lands at the top of the running back list this season, he is just one of the many talented players at the position that put together big seasons while increasing their value both at the college football level as well as for the NFL Draft.

Joining Gordon II on the list includes the talented Michigan Wolverines running back Blake Corum, Notre Dame Fighting Irish running back Audric Estime, Quinshon Judkins of the Ole Miss Rebels, and Omarion Hampton of the North Carolina Tar Heels.

Honorable Mention

Jacory Croskey-Merritt

School: New Mexico Lobos

Just missing the Top 10 Best Running Backs of 2023 College Football Rankings list is the New Mexico Lobos senior running back Jacory Croskey-Merritt.

Croskey-Merritt who transferred in for the 2023-2024 NCAA Football rewarded the Lobos with his first 1,000-yard rushing attack of his career while finishing the season with 1,190 yards on 189 carries while averaging 6.3 yards per carry.

The production wouldn’t stop they’re as the Lobos running back would add one touchdown reception to go along with 17 rushing touchdowns.

Quinton Cooley

School: Liberty Flames

One of the most surprising teams in the country during the current college football season was the Liberty Flames who finished the season with 13-0 record took home the top spot within Conference USA while landing a prime-time bowl matchup against the Oregon Ducks within the Vrbo Fiesta Bowl.

One of the team’s key offensive weapons was junior running back Quinton Cooley who finished the season ranked 6th in the nation with 16 rushing touchdowns.

The shifty elusive running back from Bailey, North Carolina also added 1,322 yards on 213 total carries while averaging 6.2 yards per carry on the year.

Top 10 Best College Running Backs Rankings

10. Peny Boone

School: Toledo Rockets

Coming in at number 10 on the Top 10 Best Running Backs in College Football 2023 Rankings list is the Toledo Rockets running back Peny Boone. Boone, who is from Detroit Michigan, transferred to the Rockets before the start of the 2022-2023 NCAA Football season.

A move that would pay off for both Boone as well as the Rockets. The junior running back posted 194 carries during the season to go along with 1,400 yards and 15 rushing touchdowns while averaging 7.2 yards per carry.

The production doesn’t stop there for the 6-foot 1 inch power running back who also added 15 catches for 219 yards and one touchdown reception within the team’s passing attack.

9. Cody Schrader

School: Missouri Tigers

The Missouri Tigers are coming off an impressive 10-2 season while finishing second within the SEC East conference.

One of the team’s key playmakers, Cody Schrader put together a senior season while setting career highs in a wide range of offensive statistics including carries (247), rushing yards (1489), average yards per carry (6.0) and rushing touchdowns.

Overall Schrader finished the season ranked 3rd in the nation in total rushing yards while also ranking tied for 19th in rushing touchdowns. The Tigers running back also added 22 catches for 191 yards over the course of the team’s 12 games this season.

8. Kairee Robinson

School: San Jose State Spartans

When it comes to crafty speed and versatile running backs look no farther than the San Jose State Spartans senior running back Kairee Robinson.

Robinson, who only stands at 5 foot 7 inches ranked among the best running backs in the nation while finishing the season averaging 7.1 yards per carry over 158 total carries.

The Spartans running backs ability to break tackles, find the hole and use his speed to open up the field was on display each week of the season.

The senior running back finished the season rushing for 1,127 rushing yards while ranking among the tops of the touchdown leader board while finding the end zone 18 times over the course of the season.

7. Blake Watson

School: Memphis Tigers 

While the Memphis Tigers are not typically a football program that you come to think about producing top talented running backs.

However, that is the case for the current college football season as senior running back Blake Watson stepped up big for the team while his talent as a top tier running back.

Watson, who transferred in with the Tigers capped off his college career with his second 1,000 yard rushing season of his college career (1,045) while also setting a career high with 14 rushing touchdowns.

6. Ashton Jeanty

School: Boise State Broncos

One of the top two way running backs finishing off the 2023-2024 NCAA Football season is the Boise State Broncos running back Ashton Jeanty. Jeanty is a dynamic playmaker both within the rushing attack as well as a pass catcher out of the backfield while also having the ability to line up out wide for the Broncos.

Jeanty who is also a sophomore finished off his second season with the Broncos rushing for 1,262 yards while also adding 552 receiving yards.

In addition to the 1,814 total yards, Jeanty also added 14 rushing touchdowns and five touchdown receptions while averaging 6.2 yards per carry over the course of the season.

5. Omarion Hampton

School: North Carolina Tar Heels

Rounding out the Top 5 on the Top 10 Best Running Backs in College Football 2023 Ranking list is the North Carolina Tar Heels running back Omarion Hampton.

The Tar Heels sophomore running back capped off a strong second season with the team while finishing ranked 5th in the nation in rushing yards while finishing the season with 1,442. Hampton showcased dual threat capabilities in addition to his running attack while also adding 26 catches for 215 yards with one touchdown reception.

The talented sophomore with tremendous break away speed and size also found the end zone 15 times during his 234 rushing attempts during the season. 

4. Quinshon Judkins

School: Ole Miss Rebels

One of the most talented sophomore college football players in the nation is the Ole Miss Rebels running back Quinshon Judkins. Judkins took a step back in total yards from leading all freshmen with 1,567 yards last year.

The Rebels running back finished off his second season with the team posting 1,052 yards on 237 carries while rushing for 15 rushing touchdowns. Over his first two seasons with the team Judkins has combined for 2,619 yards and 31 total rushing touchdowns.

In addition, Judkins added 135 yards on 21 receptions to go along with one touchdown reception as well in the Rebels passing attack this season while continuing to raise his draft stock for the 2025 NFL Draft class.

3. Audric Estime

School: Notre Dame Fighting Irish

The 2023-2024 NCAA Football season didn’t quite finish the way the Notre Dame Fighting Irish would have liked it, but it wasn’t due to the production within the running game.

Leading that charge was the Fighting Irish junior running back Audric Estime who capped off the season rushing for 1,341 total yards on 210 carries while averaging 6.4 yards per carry.

In addition to his production picking up yards, Estime added 18 rushing touchdowns while also adding 142 receiving yards on 17 receptions. The Fighting Irish running back finished the season ranked tied for 3rd in rushing touchdowns and 8th in rushing yards.

2. Blake Corum

School: Michigan Wolverines

It is hard to look past the success the Michigan Wolverines had during the 2023-2024 NCAA Football season without looking at the production of Blake Corum.

Corum, who finished the season taking home First-Team All-Big Ten selection, led the nation with 24 rushing touchdowns across the season while helping the Wolverines finish with a 13-0 record.

The Wolverines capped off his third straight season with at least 11 rushing touchdowns while also topping the 1,000 yard rushing mark (1,028) for the second straight season.

Corum enters the College Football Playoffs as the top ranked running back to be featured while also elevating his stock for the 2023 NFL Draft.

1. Ollie Gordon II

School: Oklahoma State Cowboys

In at number one on the Top 10 Best Running Backs in College Football 2023 Rankings list is the Oklahoma State Cowboys running back Ollie Gordon II.

Gordon II and Blake Corum of the Michigan Wolverines battled all season long as the top two college running backs in the country, each putting together strong seasons. In the end Gordon II lands at the top after leading the country with 1,614 rushing yards on 258 carries.

The rushing yards the Cowboys running back finished just behind Corum for the rushing touchdown lead with 20 rushing touchdowns. In addition, Gordon II also added 326 receiving yards on 37 total catches including one touchdown reception as part of the Cowboys passing attack.

How would you rank the Best Running Backs in College Football for the 2023-2024 BCS season? Rank below to be added in the NCAA Power Rankings.

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Players Count 10
  1. Ollie Gordon II

    Running Backs
  2. Audric Estime

    Running Backs
  3. Ashton Jeanty

    Running Backs
  4. Tank Bigsby

    Running Backs
  5. Raheim Sanders

    Running Backs
  6. Zach Charbonnet

    Running Backs
  7. Bijan Robinson

    Running Backs
  8. Blake Corum

    Running Backs
  9. Mohamed Ibrahim

    Running Backs
  10. Quinshon Judkins

    Running Backs
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