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Week 7 college football TV schedule: Breaking down the top 5 running backs in action

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Today we provide a list of college football games being played throughout the day. In addition, we highlight and profile the top 5 running backs for the 2018 NFL Draft.

NCAA Football: Penn State at Iowa Jeffrey Becker-USA TODAY Sports

As the San Francisco 49ers season enter’s the second quarter of the season the 2018 NFL Draft may already be on the minds of the front office, coaching staff, and many fans. While Brian Hoyer is the official stater for now, it is only inevitable that the 49ers will be looking towards the draft or free agency (I’m looking at you Kurt Cousins) to obtain their quarterback of the future. Another position of need may very well be at running back, especially if impending free agent and current stater Carlos Hyde is wearing Anne uniform next season. If you are concerned about the future at running back for the 49ers…or are simply interested in some of the draft eligible prospects at the position then check out my Top 5 Running Backs to watch listed below…

* indicates Junior Status

1. Saquon Barkley, RB - Penn State* (Bye Week)

5’11” 223 lbs. Projected Round: Top 5 Pick

Normally, I will only highlight players who are being featured this week, however Barkley will be an exception to this rule…He is that good! Is it absurd for a team to select a running back in the top 3? Perhaps so, however you may just sign up for this if the prospect, which in this case is Saquon Barkley is even more talented than Ezekiel Elliot who was taken number 4 overall by Dallas. Off-the-field stuff aside, Dallas seems very happy with their investment when he is on the field.

While I believe the 49ers will focus on the quarterback position…if, and only IF they sign Cousins and they are in prime position, then Barkley is a no-brainer. Barkley is currently averaging 6.7 yards per carry and has 527 yards pf rushing for four touchdowns. He has also added 27 receptions for 386 yards and an additional two touchdowns. His ability to cut and elude defenders time after time as well as his break-out straight-line speed make him the most dangerous offensive playmaker in this upcoming draft. In addition, his ability to run and catch the ball make him versatile dual-threat that can be utilized in multiple ways. Since Barkley is on a bye week I have included a highlights video below. Enjoy!

2. Derrius Guice*, RB - LSU vs Auburn - 3:30pm - CBS
5’11” 212 lbs. Projected Round: 1st

NCAA Football: Louisiana State at Florida Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

It wasn’t too long ago we were talking about another former LSU running back, Leonard Fournette who now plays for the Jacksonville Jaguars. Earlier this season Fournette Wass quoted sating the following, “I believe he has the ability to be the number 1, number 2 even [higher than] me player coming out of the draft”. Strong statement coming from his former teammate who may know Guice’s ability better than anyone. Thanks to injuries to Fournette last season Guice broke out his sophomore season averaging 7.6 yards per carry with 1,387 yards on the ground and 15 touchdowns. He also reeled in 9 receptions for 106 yards. A bruising and elusive running back who can run downhill and parallel, east-to-west. Has demonstrated on numerous occasions the ability to fight for more yardage after initial contact. Will have to keep an eye on his health as he missed a game already this season nursing an ankle. Still, though bearing any setbacks, Guice should hear his named called on night one of the draft.

3. Nick Chubb, RB - Georgia vs Missouri - 7:30pm - SEC Network
5’10” 220 lbs. Round Projection: 2nd Round

NCAA Football: Georgia at Vanderbilt Christopher Hanewinckel-USA TODAY Sports

What a roller coaster collegiate career it has been for Bradley Chubb. From absolutely taking the college football field by storm in his freshman season to the devastating knee injury that some thought would end his career, to his comeback…It has been one crazy ride for Chubb that has had plenty of up’s and downs along the way. Perhaps the most bruising and violent runner in this upcoming draft, Chubb has the potential to be a three down back at the next level. The good news, minus some speed he has lost from his injury, Chubb looks to be back to his old self. The bad news, he is fighting for every snap with a committee of backs at Georgia. Chubb has consistently demonstrated his ability to produce yards after contact and be a dual threat back with the ability to both run and catch the ball as a receiver. So far this season he is averaging 6.8 yards per carry for 480 yards and 6 touchdowns. I don’t know what it is, but Chubb just seems to have the look as an NFL running back. Time will tell for sure.

4. Ronald Jones II, RB - USC - 8pm - ABC
6’0” - 200 lbs. Round Projection: 2nd Round

NCAA Football: Oregon State at Southern California Kelvin Kuo-USA TODAY Sports

While Sam Darnold continues to get all the draft hype at USC, another offensive weapon for the trojans continues to raise his draft stock week in and week out. That prospect his Ronald Jones II. So far this season Jones is averaging 6.2 yards per carry for 450 yards and six touchdowns. As a receiver he has reeled in 3 receptions for 85 yards and 1 touchdown. Here’s a fun fact…Dating back to last season Jones has scored a touchdown in his last twelve games. This fast and strong running back has been very productive during his time at Southern California. He plays especially well in the red zone. Jones has great field vision, finding the holes and gaps created by his offensive line. While he isn't a power back such as Guice and Chubb he makes up for it with his speed. It also doesn’t hurt when his quarterback is carving up defenses and giving the running game a lot of opportunities that Jones capitalizes on.

5. Royce Freeman, RB - Oregon @ Stanford - 11pm
5’11” - 230 lbs. Round projection: 3rd Round

NCAA Football: California at Oregon Troy Wayrynen-USA TODAY Sports

Kareem Hunt was not drafted in the first round and yet he continues to run for over a hundred yards a game. I’m a little confuse why Freeman is jot getting as much draft hype as she of the other backs higher on this list. Perhaps it’s playing in the PAC 12 when moat of the country is sleeping…who knows. Here’s what I know, Freeman has that same potential as Hunt where if he lands in the right situation, he could be a special back at the next level. Freeman might be one of the fastest if not the fastest running back in this upcoming draft. So far this season he is averaging 5.7 yards for 592 yards and 10 touchdowns. Freeman can find the end zone in a variety of ways. Like the others on this list Freeman is a dual threat who can line up and catch the ball, so far reeling in 9 receptions for 128 yards. 49ers Fans, especially those on the west coast…take some time to watch Freeman tomorrow night against a quality opponent in Stanford. Like Kareem Hunt, Freeman might not be amongst the first few backs drafted but he could be the surprise of surprises next year when the NFL kicks off.

NCAA Football: Notre Dame at Michigan State Mike Carter-USA TODAY Sports

Saturday Schedule (All Kickoff’s EST)

#6 TCU @ Kansas State - 12pm - FS1
#17 Michigan @ Indiana - 12pm - ABC
#20 NC State @ Pittsburgh - 12pm - ACC Network
#24 Texas Tech @ West Virginia - 12pm - ESPNU
Florida State @ Duke - 12pm - ESPN2
Rutgers @ Illinois - 12pm - Big Ten Network
Eastern Michigan @ Army - 12pm - CBSSN
BYU @ Mississippi State - 12pm - SEC Network
South Carolina @ Tennessee - 12pm - ESPN
Kansas @ Iowa State - 12pm - N/A
Boston College @ Louisville - 12:20pm - ACC Network
UNLV @ Air Force - 2pm - N/A
Old Dominion @ Marshall - 2:30pm - ESPN3
Purdue @ #3 Wisconsin - 3:30pm - Big Ten Network
#10 Auburn @ LSU - 3:30pm - CBS
Georgia Tech @ #11 Miami - 3:30pm - ABC
#12 Oklahoma @ Texas - 3:30pm - ESPN
Baylor @ Oklahoma State - 3:30pm - FS1
Virginia @ North Carolina - 3:30pm - ACC Network
Northwestern @ Maryland - 3:30pm - ESPN2
Vanderbilt @ Ole Miss - 3:30pm - SEC Network
Akron @ Western Michigan - 3:30pm - CBSSN
Miami (OH) @ Kent State - 3:30pm - ESPN3
Northern Illinois @ Buffalo - 3:30pm - ESPN3
Ohio @ Bowling Green - 3:30pm - ESPN3
Toledo @ Central Michigan - 3:30pm - ESPN3
#25 Navy @ Memphis - 3:45pm - ESPNU
Houston @ Tulsa - 4pm - ESPNEWS
Colorado @ Oregon State - 4pm - PAC 12 Network
Charlotte @ Western Kentucky - 4:30pm - N/A
Wyoming @ Utah State - 4:30pm - N/A
Georgia State @ Louisiana Monroe - 5pm - ESPN3
Appalachian State @ Idaho - 5pm - ESPN3
Middle Tennessee @ UAB - 6:30pm - N/A
Eastern Carolina @ #22 UCF - 7pm - CBSSN
UT San Antonio @ North Texas - 7pm - ESPN3
UTEP @ Southern Mississippi - 7pm - N/A
Tulane @ Florida International - 7pm - N/A
Texas A & M @ Florida - 7pm - ESPN2
Coastal Carolina @ Arkansas State - 7pm - ESPN3
Arkansas @ #1 Alabama - 7:15pm - ESPN
Missouri @ #4 Georgia - 7:30pm - SEC Network
#9 Ohio State @ Nebraska - 7:30pm - SEC Network
Cincinnati @ #18 South Florida - 7:30pm - ESPNU
Utah @ #13 USC - 8pm - ABC
#21 Michigan State @ Minnesota - 8pm - Big Ten Network
UCLA @ Arizona - 9pm - PAC12 Network
New Mexico @ Fresno State - 10pm - N/A
Nevada @ Colorado State - 10:15pm - ESPN2
Boise State @ #19 San Diego State - 10:30pm - CBSSN
#5 Washington @ Arizona State - 10:45pm - ESPN
Oregon @ #23 Stanford - 11pm - N/A
San Jose State @ Hawaii - Midnight - N/A

What running backs are you excited to see in action? Share in the comments below!