Galloway gets no respect

Although he's the leading rusher on the team that led the conference in rushing last season, Ahmaad Galloway's name doesn't usually come up when All-SEC selections are being considered.

But that may not matter, as Galloway is being featured with the best running backs in the nation on the Doak Walker Award watch list. The award, named after 1948 Heisman trophy winner Doak Walker from SMU, is given to the top running back in America each year. BYU's Luke Staley won the award last year.

Galloway breaks a tackle versus Ole Miss.

"I found out about it this summer," Galloway said. "It's encouraging, some people realize that he's on a team that has several good backs."

As a junior last season, Galloway led the Tide in rushing with 881 yards and six touchdowns while splitting time with Santonio Beard. He was also the team's leading rusher in 2000, but has not been on anyone's pre-season or post-season All-SEC team.

However, Galloway knows that he can't let that bother him.

"You gotta keep those things in the back of your mind and keep on going," Galloway said. "All I care about is the 10 guys on offense and 11 on defense. Vote getters, they don't win with me and they don't lose with me."

Many people think that he isn't featured with the likes of Auburn's Carnell Williams and LSU's LaBrandon Toefield because he isn't the featured back in the offense. Last year, Galloway split the carries with Beard. The year before, he shared the spotlight with Brandon Miree. This year, there is Beard and also Texas Tech transfer Shaud Williams.

"I feel like personally if I'm at a different school, I put up 1500 yards easy," Galloway said. "But I'm in a position now where there are a lot of good guys around me and I get to share the ball."

He doesn't get much respect among Southeastern sportswriters, but Ahmaad Galloway is on the watch list for the Doak Walker Award, signifying the top college running back in the nation.

Galloway does feel that people still haven't figured out how good he is, as evidence to him not getting the recognition that other running backs in the conference receive.

"I do in the back of my mind (think about the snubbing)," Galloway said. "It fuels the fire. We got a lot of people that say you can't, so why not do. I feel the same thing about Shaud Williams. They're going to get a dose of Shaud Williams this year."

Galloway also has endured a coaching change during his career, which was one more thing to adjust to. But, after a start to the season that wasn't too impressive, Galloway figured out what it took to please Dennis Franchione and his coaching staff.

"We had a big transition early on in the season," Galloway said. "I stepped out in the summer as a big time leader. Our offense sputtered at the end of the season. He gave me a personal challenge in the last five games of a season to turn it up. He never lost any confidence in me, he's always challenging me."

So Galloway carries the confidence that his coach and other teammates have in him out onto the field, and isn't afraid to show it off.

"Regardless of where we play and who we play, I feel like I'm the best on the field," Galloway said. "If you don't think that, you shouldn't be out there."


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