Damien Williams: Sooners RB Continues to Prove He's Among Nation's Elite

Rick WeinerFeatured ColumnistOctober 13, 2012

NORMAN, OK - SEPTEMBER 22:  Running back Damien Williams #26 of the Oklahoma Sooners pauses during warmups before the game against the Kansas State Wildcats  on September 22, 2012 at Gaylord Family-Oklahoma Memorial Stadium in Norman, Oklahoma. Kansas State beat Oklahoma 24-19. (Photo by Brett Deering/Getty Images)
Brett Deering/Getty Images

Beastly. That's the appropriate adjective to describe Oklahoma Sooners running back Damien Williams.

It's the only word that even comes close to describing what the junior can do with the ball in his hands.

Williams has run all over the Texas Longhorns in the first half of Saturday's meeting of longtime rivals. The junior college transfer has piled up 145 yards rushing on 16 first-half carries, highlighted by this ridiculous 95-yard touchdown run.

That's the longest run from scrimmage in the history of the 107-game rivalry. And when you consider the names of the running backs who came before him—players like Earl Campbell, Adrian Peterson, Billy Sims and Ricky Williams—that's no small feat.

Coming into the Texas game, Williams led the nation with 9.9 yards per carry. In the four games he played before Saturday, he'd rushed for more than 100 yards in two of them—on only 10 carries in each contest.

After the first half against Texas, we can make that three 100-yard rushing performances in five games.

Williams is the total package in a running back. While he can lower his shoulder and power through defenders, he also has the lateral quickness and cutting ability to make would-be tacklers look foolish in their futile attempts to bring him down.

As for the speed aspect, well, as evidenced by that run, Williams has plenty of that—especially when he gets into the open field and can really turn it on.

He's only been starting for Oklahoma since last week, and as he gets more touches, the numbers will continue to pile up. A 1,000-yard season is certainly not out of the question, as the Sooners have seven regular season games left after they finish off Texas.

Nobody paid much attention to Williams when he transferred to Oklahoma from Arizona Western, but the country is paying attention now.

Damien Williams is a beast—and he's going to be in the Heisman Trophy discussion in 2013.