A closer look at the top five running backs in the 2018 class, according to 247Sports.com’s rankings.
Name: Zamir White
School: Scotland County (Laurinburg, N.C.)
Noteworthy: White, nicknamed “Zeus,” is a terror when he’s set loose on the field at 6-1 and 210. He’s drawing comparisons to Leonard Fournette because of his ability to combine speed and power.
College: He is uncommitted, but recently listed his top four schools as 1. Georgia, 2.Alabama, 3. Clemson, and 4. North Carolina. He has said he will decide on a commitment next month.
Strengths: Can as easily run over defenders as blow past them. Once he gets a full head of steam, he can be really tough to stop. He is very consistent. He has only run for less than 100 yards twice in his career.
Weaknesses: His tendency to run over players will be harder to get away with in college. It also makes him more likely to be injured. He missed three games last season but still ran for 1,772 yards and 27 touchdowns on 188 carries.
Name: Lorenzo Lingard
School: University (Orange City, Fla.)
Noteworthy: Played both ways for University last season and he’s an elite athlete, one of the top hurdlers in the state.
College: Committed to Miami in February.
Strengths: Very athletic. He ran for 1,418 yards and 22 touchdowns on 130 carries last season. Unlike some track athletes, he’s more than willing to lower his head and deliver a hit.
Weaknesses: At 6-0 and 190, he runs a little too upright at times. While he has great top-end speed, he isn’t as elusive as some backs.
Name: Harold Joiner
School: Mountain Brook (Birmingham, Ala.)
Noteworthy: He does a lot of things well. He’s 6-3 and 215 and runs a 4.34 40-yard dash and he’s versatile enough to play H-back or tight end.
College: Has an unofficial top five of Alabama, Georgia, LSU, Ole Miss and Auburn.
Strengths: As the biggest back of the bunch, he has a lot of versatility and could also play receiver. Last season, he ran for 744 yards and eight touchdowns and had nine catches for 180 yards.
Weaknesses: He hasn’t had that big breakout season that the others have had and he’s also been prone to injuries.
Name: James Cook
School: Miami (Fla.) Central
Noteworthy: Cook, the younger brother of second-round Minnesota Vikings draft selection Dalvin Cook, is actually taller than his older brother at 5-11 and 185 but runs low to the ground and does a great job of changing direction. He also is deceptively fast with a 4.4 time in the 40.
College: He has committed to his brother’s alma mater, Florida State, but has been making visits elsewhere.
Strengths: Great balance and explosiveness.
Weaknesses: His production hasn’t matched the promise, at least not yet, one reason why he was named only third team All-County last season.
Name: Brian Snead
School: Armwood (Seffner, Fla.)
Noteworthy: He rushed for 901 yards and 15 touchdowns on just 121 carries and had 262 receiving yards. He had 162 yards on 18 carries in one game last season.
College: Ohio State commit.
Strengths: Runs low to the ground and breaks tackles easily. He is adept at adjusting speeds to fool defenders. Is also the most polished receiver of the group and a solid blocker.
Weaknesses: While he has good lateral quickness, he can be caught from behind on occasion.