Christian McCaffrey might be gone, but there’s a new Stanford running back galloping his way into the record books.
His name is Bryce Love, and he plays like The Flash in shoulder pads. A 5-foot-10, 196-pound junior, Love’s 1,240 rushing yards through six games ranks first in the nation. He’s currently averaging an absurd 10.5 yards per carry. If he continues at this pace, Love wouldn’t only break Stanford’s program record of 2,019 rushing yards in a season (set by McCaffrey in 2015). He would break Barry Sanders’ all-time NCAA FBS record of 2,628 rushing yards in a season:
The only caveat is that Love will have played more games than Sanders, but we’re talking about a record that’s stood since 1988. Semantics aside, it would be a remarkable feat.
So, who the heck is this guy? The first thing that stands out about Love is his exquisite speed. A former track star, Love won USA Track & Field’s Youth Athlete of the Year award in 2009. His 10.73 in the 100-meter dash still stands as a national record for boys in the 13-14 age group. He also clocked a 4.30 40-Yard Dash in high school, per ESPN. That explosive speed makes Love a threat to hit pay dirt anytime he totes the rock:
Love also packs a surprising amount of power for a runner his size. A bonafide gym rat, Love was capable of power cleaning over 300 pounds and squatting over 500 by the time he graduated high school. Love’s extraordinary play has entrenched him in the Heisman Trophy conversation. He’ll get a great test this weekend against Oregon’s stingy run defense, as the Ducks are holding opponents to just 2.7 yards per carry.