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Alabama will enter 2015 with the toughest schedule in college football, according to ESPN’s football power index. Its defensive front seven looks to be the best nationally, but the Crimson Tide will face some top notch running backs this fall. Yours truly of Touchdown Alabama Magazine has listed the top three Southeastern Conference backs that Alabama will meet.


Jonathan Williams, ARK senior Photo by:

Jonathan Williams, ARK senior
Photo by:

3. Jonathan Williams

  • Classification: Senior
  • Size: 6-foot-1, 223 pounds
  • Team: Arkansas Razorbacks

Summary: Senior running back Jonathan Williams is coming off a 1,000-yard rushing season in 2014. He averaged 5.6 yards per carry, and totaled 1,190 yards with 12 touchdowns.

Williams put in 83 rushing yards and a touchdown on 20 carries in Arkansas’ meeting with Alabama last season. The Razorbacks lost 14-13, but will look repay the favor at Bryant-Denny Stadium. Williams has accounted for 2,321 career rushing yards and 16 touchdowns.


Leonard Fournette, LSU sophomore Photo by:

Leonard Fournette, LSU sophomore
Photo by:

2. Leonard Fournette

  • Classification: Sophomore
  • Size: 6-foot-1, 230 pounds
  • Team: LSU Tigers

Summary: He got his bell rung by Alabama’s inside linebacker Reuben Foster last season, but sophomore running back Leonard Fournette is a grown man aside from that.

He averaged 5.5 yards per carry as a freshman, and tallied 1,034 yards with 10 touchdowns. Fournette displayed good hands as a pass catcher, logging seven receptions for 127 yards.

Fournette totaled five 100-yard rushing performances in 2014, with three coming against SEC opponents (Florida, Ole Miss and Texas A&M). He rushed for 79 yards against Alabama.


Nick Chubb, UGA sophomore Photo by: Bleacher Report

Nick Chubb, UGA sophomore
Photo by: Bleacher Report

1. Nick Chubb

  • Classification: Sophomore
  • Size: 5-foot-10, 220 pounds
  • Team: Georgia Bulldogs

Summary: Sophomore running back Nick Chubb presents Alabama with its first SEC test this season. He filled in admirably for Georgia’s star running back Todd Gurley when he was hurt and suspended. Chubb chimed in with 1,547 rushing yards and 14 touchdowns on 7.1 yards per carry. He was a dependable target on the receiving end for quarterback Hutson Mason.

Chubb recorded 213 receiving yards and two touchdowns on 18 receptions.

He finished last season as the SEC’s Freshman of the Year. With Gurley gone, Chubb emerges as the featured back in Georgia’s run heavy offense.


Other backs to face Alabama in 2015: Corey Clement (Wisconsin), Roc Thomas (Auburn), Jalen Hurd (Tennessee), Tra Carson (Texas A&M) and Ashton Shumpert (Mississippi State)


Stephen M. Smith is a senior analyst and columnist for Touchdown Alabama Magazine, Pick Six Previews and SB Nation. You can “like” him on Facebook or “follow” him on Twitter, via @ESPN_Future.

Stephen Smith is a 2015 graduate of the University of Alabama. He is a senior writer and reporter for Touchdown Alabama Magazine. He has covered Alabama football for 15 years and his knowledge and coverage of the Crimson Tide's program have made him among the most respected journalist in his field. Smith has been featured on ESPN and several other marquee outlets as an analyst.

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