Leonard Fournette has been chasing history all season but now according to Nola.com’s John Roach, Fournette is chasing former Texas running back and Heisman-winner Ricky Williams.
The 6-foot-1, 230-pound sophomore is truly in rarefied air this year. Fournette is already ahead yardage-wise of where four of the last five Heisman RBs were through seven games but still trails Williams, Roach writes:
Through 7 games, Fournette trails only one of the five Heisman Trophy-winning running backs of the last 20 years. Fournette has 1,352 rushing yards, while Texas RB Ricky Williams in 1998 gained 1,511 yards after his team’s first 7 games. Fournette only needed FIVE games to top the other four after they played 7 (he had 1,022 after 5): Wisconsin’s Ron Dayne (1999) had 1,020, Ohio State’s Eddie George (1995) had 990, Alabama’s Mark Ingram (2009) had 905 yards, and Reggie Bush (2005) had 812.
Williams rushed for 2,124 yards and 27 touchdowns in 11 games in 1998, while Fournette is on pace to run for exactly 2,124 yards and 23 TDs by season’s end. Whether Fournette catches Williams remains to be seen but the end result will likely be the same for Fournette, as it was for Williams; he’ll take a trip to New York and head home with the Heisman Trophy.