Big Ten Football Preview: Running Backs

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Jan 12, 2015; Arlington, TX, USA; Ohio State Buckeyes running back Ezekiel Elliott (15) celebrates after scoring a touchdown against the Oregon Ducks in the 2015 CFP National Championship Game at AT&T Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Matthew Emmons-USA TODAY

In the first installment of the Baltimore Wire’s 2015 Big Ten football preview, I provided a breakdown of how the conference stacked up in terms of quarterbacks. Next up is the running backs.

Last season, the conference had a pretty talented crop of players at the running back position, but only two of them topped 2,000 yards for the season: Wisconsin’s Melvin Gordon and Indiana’s Tevin Coleman. Unlike last season, however, there is a clear-cut leader of the pack for 2015.

While that one player is head and shoulders above the rest, the Big Ten still has other capable players who are primed to have big seasons.

As always, there will be some intriguing battles at running back over the summer, as some backfields have become a little more crowded than others. Coaches at Michigan, Rutgers, Purdue, and Iowa are already expecting some intense competition, as they each have multiple backs who have the opportunity to be the come Week 1.

Without further ado, here are the Big Ten running back rankings for the 2015-16 college football season.