Kansas State senior John Hubert, Kansas senior James Sims and Missouri junior Henry Josey are among the 63 candidates for the Doak Walker Award, given to the nation’s top college running back.
In 2011, Josey was a semifinalist for the award after rushing for 1,168 yards and nine touchdowns before a serious knee injury caused him to miss all of last season. He sits atop Missouri’s most recent depth chart at running back after vaulting past sophomore Russell Hansbrough and junior Marcus Murphy during spring practice.
Sims, who lost out to Hubert and Baylor’s Lache Seastrunk on the media’s preseason All-Big 12 team, will be the centerpiece in a crowded KU backfield that features junior Tony Pierson, senior Taylor Cox and sophomore Darrian Miller, a former Blue Springs star who returned to the program this spring. Sims rushed for 1,013 yards last season, leading the Big 12 and finishing 18th nationally, and was chosen second-team All-Big 12.
Hubert is the fourth K-State player to go up for the award twice, joining J.J. Smith (1993-94), Darren Sproles (who was the 2003 runner-up and also a candidate in 2004) and Daniel Thomas (who was a candidate in 2009 and a semifinalist in 2010). Hubert, an All-Big 12 first-team pick a year ago, ranked fourth in Big 12 rushing and third with 15 rushing touchdowns last season. He is also a candidate for the Maxwell Award.