College Football

Power Ranking Top 10 RB Recruits in Class of 2015

Tyler DonohueNational Recruiting AnalystMarch 4, 2014

Power Ranking Top 10 RB Recruits in Class of 2015

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    Texas prospect Ronald Jones II
    Texas prospect Ronald Jones IICredit: 247Sports

    Top running back recruits regularly command key offensive duties during their first season on a college campus. The 2015 class of rushers is filled with potential instant-impact freshmen who are capable of dominating FBS competition during the foreseeable future.

    The position features substantial depth on an annual basis, and this group is no exception. We watched film from hundreds of high school games to learn more about each of the elite prospects, eventually constructing a top-10 list of outstanding running backs.

    Recruits are ranked based on decisiveness, acceleration, strength and fundamental skills.

     

    All prospect information and statistics courtesy of 247Sports unless otherwise noted.

10. Larry Scott

2 of 11

    Size: 6'0", 205 pounds

    School: Hubbard High School (Hubbard, Ohio)

     

    Junior Season Highlights

    Hubbard reached the state quarterfinals with Larry Scott leading the way. He reached 1,600 rushing yards for the second straight season and scored 21 touchdowns.

     

    Scouting Report

    Scott is a load to tackle. He runs with a physical nature and dishes out power upon contact.

    You won't see him run away from the average college defensive back, but he'll run over his fair share. His straight-line speed is impressive, but he lacks elite acceleration at the second level.

    He is among the country's best receivers out of the backfield. Expect college coaches to keep him actively involved in the passing game.

     

    Recruitment Status

    The Ohio running back received offers from Auburn and Alabama in February. It was a busy month for Scott, who visited Pittsburgh, West Virginia and Michigan State.

9. Nick Brossette

3 of 11

    Size: 6'0", 207 pounds

    School: University Lab High School (Baton Rouge, La.)

     

    Junior Season Highlights

    Nick Brossette rumbled for more than 2,100 yards for the second year in a row. He scored 37 rushing touchdowns as the Cubs advanced to a state title game.

     

    Scouting Report

    Brossette is an unyielding runner who attacks the line of scrimmage. Power is the foundation of his rushing style, which relies far more on physicality than agility.

    He doesn't dance around in the backfield, displaying decisiveness immediately after receiving the ball. He is rarely brought down by the first defender he encounters.

    While he doesn't show consistent signs of breakaway speed, he can beat you with blunt force. His receiving skills are above-average.

     

    Recruitment Status

    He committed to LSU last August and is a key part of the Tigers' impressive 2015 class. Texas offered Brossette in February, adding to a list that includes Alabama, Notre Dame, Florida State and Auburn.

8. Derrius Guice

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    Size: 5'10", 195 pounds 

    School: Catholic High School (Baton Rouge, La.)

     

    Junior Season Highlights

    Derrius Guice helped guide the Bears to an 8-4 campaign. He gained 1,100 yards on the ground and scored 13 touchdowns.

     

    Scouting Report

    His elusiveness is aided by an effective spin move, which he implemented to perfection on various occasions last fall. Guice also shows strength, gaining substantial chunks of yardage after contact.

    He is an every-down back who pass-blocks well and can contribute as a receiver. His physical build will allow him to take on the bulk of backfield duties early in college.

     

    Recruitment Status

    Guice may follow fellow star Baton Rouge running back Nick Brossette to LSU. The local standout is predicted to sign with the Tigers by 100 percent of experts in 247Sports' crystal ball.

    However, he did receive an offer from Alabama while attending a February junior day in Tuscaloosa. Texas also extended a scholarship.

7. Rodney Anderson

5 of 11

    Size: 6'0.5", 204 pounds 

    School: Katy High School (Katy, Texas)

     

    Junior Season Highlights

    Rodney Anderson starred for storied Texas powerhouse Katy throughout a run to the state championship game at Cowboys Stadium. He established personal highs with 1,967 rushing yards and 40 total touchdowns.

     

    Scouting Report

    Anderson is a tremendously balanced runner. He gets downfield in a hurry and carries the ball with authority.

    There is serious burst in his initial approach to the rushing lane, and it pays off with quick bunches of yards. He doesn't make many defenders miss, but that's not necessarily his style.

    He takes on contact and finishes plays falling forward. Anderson is also capable of lining up wide as a weapon in the passing attack and can return kicks, as evidenced by four punt-return touchdowns in the past two seasons.

     

    Recruitment Status

    He committed to Texas A&M before his junior season. Anderson picked the Aggies over offers from Baylor, Auburn, Michigan State and Texas. 

6. Jordan Scarlett

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    Size: 5'10", 197 pounds 

    School: St. Thomas Aquinas High School (Fort Lauderdale, Fla.)

     

    Junior Season Highlights

    Jordan Scarlett rushed for 932 yards and 14 touchdowns in 10 games during his final season at University High School, per MaxPreps. He will play for perennial Florida title contender St. Thomas Aquinas this fall.

     

    Scouting Report

    Scarlett is a speedster who becomes uncatchable when he finds space down the sideline. He shows no hesitation after receiving the football and is a threat to score from anywhere on the field.

    The concern here is a lack of consistent vision. He doesn't always identify his ideal rushing lane and creates a clogged mess for himself.

    At the high school level, he can often rely on his athleticism to bail him out of those situations, but that won't be the case in college. His skill set makes him dangerous in open space, so it's imperative that he's able to develop better vision.

    Scarlett is a serious receiving threat and can be used to wreak havoc in the screen game.

     

    Recruitment Status

    He shocked many in December by committing to Florida Atlantic. University High School head coach Roger Harriott accepted a position on the Owls coaching staff and quickly picked up a pledge from his former star.

    Teams will attempt to sway his allegiance until signing day. Florida State, Wisconsin and Miami are among alternate options.

5. Jacques Patrick

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    Size: 6'1.5", 220 pounds 

    School: Timber Creek High School (Orlando, Fla.)

     

    Junior Season Highlights

    Jacques Patrick picked up 2,000 rushing yards for the second straight season. He scored 30 touchdowns on the ground and passed for another three scores, per MaxPreps.

     

    Scouting Report

    Patrick is a prototypical north-south runner who can pile up the carries and remain effective. He's an explosive upright rusher who flashes a nasty stiff arm.

    When he reaches the secondary, he is able to hit another level of acceleration and leave defensive backs behind. His leg strength is apparent as he runs through arm tackles.

    Coaches can count on him to make an immediate impact at the next level and take on a variety of roles.

     

    Recruitment Status

    He attended junior day at Florida State during the first weekend of March, and the Seminoles are heavy favorites in 247Sports' crystal ball with 89 percent of predictions. He has a vast array of offers, including Florida, Ohio State, UCF, Auburn and Tennessee.

4. Ronald Jones II

8 of 11

    Size: 6'0", 185 pounds

    School: McKinney North High School (McKinney, Texas)

     

    Junior Season Highlights

    Ronald Jones II enjoyed a breakout junior campaign that featured 2,400 rushing yards. He scored 39 touchdowns during a run to the state playoffs.

     

    Scouting Report

    Jones possesses an enviable blend of straight-line speed and superb agility. He has legitimate breakaway speed and forces the secondary to remain honest.

    His upper-body control is outstanding, and he is a compact ball-carrier in traffic. He is a tenacious runner who thrives in a quick-hitting offensive attack. 

    Jones is a viable candidate to line up in the slot when coaches aim to create athletic mismatches.

     

    Recruitment Status

    His recruitment gained substantial momentum in February, when offers poured in from Michigan, Miami, Alabama, Louisville and Texas A&M. Early favorites include Oklahoma and Baylor.

3. Taj Griffin

9 of 11

    Size: 5'10", 175 pounds

    School: McEachern High School (Powder Springs, Ga.)

     

    Junior Season Highlights

    Taj Griffin helped carry the Indians to an 11-3 campaign that ended in the state semifinals. He pushed the team past Collins Hill in the quarterfinals with 144 rushing yards and a game-winning punt return, per The Marietta Daily Journal.

     

    Scouting Report

    Griffin doesn't always take the most direct path, but once he finds daylight, the defense is in trouble. He has a sprinter's speed, and it shows when he outraces defensive backs en route to the end zone.

    He turns his effort up a notch when the goal line is in sight, dishing out physical punishment to defenders in his path. He is a smooth operator in the open field and navigates rushing lanes as they evolve downfield.

    His skill set makes him a strong candidate to contribute as a kick returner in college.

     

    Recruitment Status

    He received offers from Alabama, Stanford and Ole Miss after the 2013 season. Georgia aims to keep him in state, but Clemson, Oregon, Florida State and Ohio State are also in the mix.

2. DeSherrius Flowers

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    Size: 6'1", 212 pounds

    School: Vigor High School (Mobile, Ala.)

     

    Junior Season Highlights

    The Wolves struggled at times, but DeSherrius Flowers produced at a high level. His scintillating season featured a 250-yard, four-touchdown game against Faith Academy.

     

    Scouting Report

    Flowers is a violent runner who takes the time for one cut and fires off his front foot with aggression. His legs remain active in a crowd, and he's tough to contain even when defenders have a fistful of his jersey.

    He doesn't waste steps and keeps his progress moving forward. Flowers reaches the second level with mounting acceleration and catches defensive backs off guard.

    His style of rushing should translate well near the goal line in college.

     

    Recruitment Status

    He pledged to Alabama as a sophomore, joining a lengthy list of freakishly athletic Crimson Tide running backs.

1. Damien Harris

11 of 11

    Size: 5'11", 205 pounds

    School: Madison Southern High School (Berea, Ky.)

     

    Junior Season Highlights

    Damien Harris erupted for 2,600 rushing yards during a 10-win season at Madison Southern. He scored 42 touchdowns in 12 games.

     

    Scouting Report

    Harris shrugs off tacklers near the line of scrimmage, gains separation and swiftly picks up speed. He has borderline elite quickness and will improve in the acceleration department with further physical development at the next level.

    His vision and patience put him in position to create opportunities even when a blocking scheme breaks down in front of him. He reads his linemen well and searches for seams to exploit in the defense.

    The power he displays deep into the fourth quarter provides a strong indication that he can carry the offensive rushing load immediately in college.

     

    Recruitment Status

    He decommitted from Michigan in January, but the Wolverines remain a strong contender for his signature. Florida State, Alabama and Arkansas offered Harris in February, creating an even deeper list of options that already included Ohio State, Auburn and Kentucky.

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