What Now At Running Back?

Oklahoma State fans have to wish all the best and great success to running back Joe Randle as he, in his words, pursues his dream of playing in the NFL. Randle, who rushed for 3,187 yards and 40 touchdowns during his Cowboys playing career, indicated Thursday that he will bypass his senior season to enter the NFL Draft. So, what now for the Cowboys at the running back position?

The Cowboys move on with Jeremy Smith ready to pick up as 1A in the rushing attack. Behind the senior Smith, who has 1,439 yards and 25 touchdowns in his career, are Desmond Roland and Caleb Muncrief. Roland is somewhat proven but he has seen little time in crunch time in games, and Muncrief has seen only a little mop-up duty.

The program has a history under Mike Gundy of playing as many as three running backs extensively during a season, and many backs such as Kendall Hunter, Keith Toston and Randle performed a lot as true freshmen.

Randle's departure creates another opening in the recruiting class to go with All-State running back Corion Webster of Atlanta, Texas, who is already committed to the Cowboys.

Here is a look at Webster and some of the running backs that Oklahoma State has been recruiting that could figure prominently in filling the spot opened up by Randle.

Corion Webster, RB, 5-11, 185, 4.5, Atlanta, Texas - verbally committed to OSU (1/18/13)
Despite missing several games with injuries, Webster led Atlanta deep into the playoffs before losing to eventual finalist Gilmer. Webster had 1,620 rushing yards and 14 touchdowns to follow up an 1,800-yard plus season as a junior. He also earned Honorable Mention All-State in Class 3A.

Daryl Chestnut, RB, 5-9, 195, 4.5, Miami (Columbus), Fla.
He was committed to Texas Tech before the Red Raiders coaching change but had been looking at Oklahoma State. He finished his senior season with 1,108 rushing yards and 14 touchdowns, averaging 9.98 yards per carry. There is a good chance he is visiting Oklahoma State on the monster weekend on Jan. 18-19. He recently told Jeff Drummond of the Kentucky Scout site that OSU was in the lead.

Chestnut currently lists a top five of Oklahoma State, Kentucky, Florida State, Miami and North Carolina. "Oklahoma State is probably my No. 1 right now. Kentucky and Florida State are both right there at No. 2, but both could be No. 1 after my visits. I just have to wait and see."

Asked what has propelled Oklahoma State into the lead, Chestnut said: "They have a great tradition of running backs and strong offenses. They had one of the greatest running backs in history in Barry Sanders. It would be fun to go and try to break some of his records."

Rennie Childs, RB, 5-11, 185, 4.5, Houston (Cypress Ridge), Texas
Childs is an emerging prospect and his numbers are awesome as he rushed for 1,945 yards and 21 touchdowns. He has visited Colorado State and Houston in December and will visit Utah State this weekend.

He told me Oklahoma State has contacted him today and he is interested, but Oregon and TCU are also jumping in on recruiting him. He will try to visit Oregon and said he may take an unofficial to TCU in order to take an official to Oklahoma State.

Alvin Kamara, RB, 5-10, 191, 4.54, Norcross, Ga.
A really talented player that just played in the Under Armour All-American Game, Kamara had 2,264 rushing yards and 26 touchdowns this season. Alabama and Georgia seem to be the leaders but there are a lot of schools that are still on his list. Oklahoma State, Florida State, Oregon, and Tennessee are the next schools on his list.

Adam Taylor, RB, 6-1, 210, 4.55, Katy, Texas
Taylor is committed to Nebraska, but might be willing to listen to a school that plays in the Big 12 and could offer early playing time. The star of the Katy state championship game effort, Taylor had 30 carries for 282 rushing yards and five touchdowns.

His numbers are off the chart with 332 carries for 2,755 rushing yards and 44 touchdowns as a senior. His career numbers are 513 carries for 4,413 rushing yards and 62 touchdowns.

Altee Tenpenny, RB, 5-11, 200, 4.5, North Little Rock, Ark.
Verbally committed to Alabama, but since the coaching change at Arkansas that new staff has been recruiting him aggressively. Tenpenny is a standout talent that has shown a liking for Oklahoma State, coming to camps and making unofficials for games.

He came back from a lost junior season with a very strong senior season. Tenpenny finished with 1,379 rushing yards and 21 touchdowns and caught 7 passes for 135 yards and two more scores. As of right now he does not have a visit scheduled to Oklahoma State. He is at Alabama this weekend (1/11/13) and Arkansas the next weekend (1/18/13).

Dontre Wilson, RB, 5-10, 180, 4.4, DeSoto, Texas
This may be the biggest longshot with Chip Kelly staying at Oregon. But Wilson did have Oklahoma State in his finalists before deciding to commit to Oregon.

This season Wilson helped lead DeSoto to a stellar campaign with 220 carries for 1,458 rushing yards and 30 touchdowns. He had over 500 receiving yards and five touchdowns. He also had a punt return and a kickoff return for a touchdown. He is an all-purpose threat.


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