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Five MAC players on Doak Walker Watch List

Last year, they combined for 5,829 yards and 67 touchdowns.

Glenn Andrews-USA TODAY Sports

The Doak Walker Award is given annually to the best running back in the nation. The watch list for this prestigious award came out this morning with 69 running backs' names mentioned including five from the MAC: Jarvion Franklin (Western Michigan Broncos), Kareem Hunt (Toledo Rockets), Anthone Taylor (Buffalo) Travis Greene (Bowling Green Falcons) and Darius Jackson (Eastern Michigan).

Nobody really knew who Jarvion Franklin was until he collected 582 total yards through his first three games as a true freshman. After finishing the season with 1,551 yards (second-most in the MAC) and fourth in the nation with 24 touchdowns, Franklin became the first player to win both MAC Freshman Player of the Year and MAC Offensive Player of the Year accolades in the same season.

Toledo's Kareem Hunt, like Franklin, was a First Team performer in 2014. As a sophomore, Hunt led the MAC with 1,631 rushing yards on 205 carries (8.0 yards/carry), even with his backup backs Terry Swanson and Damion Jones-Moore picking up 1,192 yards on the ground as well. Hunt's two best games last year came against rival BGSU (30 carries, 265 yards, 2 TD) and Akransas State in the GoDaddy Bowl (32 car., 271 yds., 5 TD).

Anthone Taylor had the responsibility of replacing Branden Oliver and did not disappoint. A Second Team All-MAC recipient, the 5-foot-10 back rushed for over 200 yards in three games last year, twice on the road. Something funny: Taylor had 36 carries in each of those three games. Taylor finished the season with 1,403 rushing yards and 12 TD.

Greene was sometimes seen as ill-effective for the Falcons, but that's far from the truth. Under first year head coach Dino Babers in his pass-heavy offense, Greene held onto his starting position after rushing for 1,594 yards as a sophomore and saw that number dip to 949 yards, but also had one more touchdown than he did in '13. His average didn't suffer and still carried the ball for around five yards per carry and did so on 99 less carries.

Battling for playing time with Bronson Hill and Ryan Brumfield last season, Darius Jackson is now the clear starter for the Eagle offense this season. There's not a lot of expectations for Jackson from the national media this year after only rushing for 295 yards and one touchdown last year under then-first year head coach Chris Creighton.

Complete List:

Leon Allen, Western Kentucky

Devontae Booker, Utah

Matt Breida, Georgia Southern

Brandon Burks, Troy

Jordan Canzeri, Iowa

Tra Carson, Texas A&M

Nick Chubb, Georgia

Corey Clement, Wisconsin

Alex Collins, Arkansas

James Conner, Pittsburgh

Marcus Cox, Appalachian State

Justin Davis, USC

Matt Dayes, N.C. State

Kenneth Dixon, Louisiana Tech

Ezekiel Elliott, Ohio State

Kenneth Farrow, Houston

Josh Ferguson, Illinois

Tarean Folston, Notre Dame

Leonard Fournette, LSU

Jarvion Franklin, Western Michigan

Royce Freeman, Oregon

Wayne Gallman, Clemson

Michael Gordon, Arkansas State

Johnathan Gray, Texas

Aaron Green, TCU

Travis Greene, Bowling Green

Russell Hansbrough, Missouri

Derrick Henry, Alabama

Jon Hilliman, Boston College

Jordan Howard, Indiana

Kareem Hunt, Toledo

LaJuan Hunt, Utah State

Darius Jackson, Eastern Michigan

Don Jackson, Nevada

Justin Jackson, Northwestern

Paul James, Rutgers

Devon Johnson, Marshall

Aaron Jones, UTEP

Daniel Lasco, California

Ray Lawry, Old Dominion

Shock Linwood, Baylor

Robert Lowe, Texas State

Akeel Lynch, Penn State

Marlon Mack, USF

Tre Madden, USC

Christian McCaffrey, Stanford

Elijah McGuire, Louisiana

Samaje Perine, Oklahoma

Paul Perkins, UCLA

Christian Powell, Colorado

Shaquille Powell, Duke

Donnel Pumphrey, San Diego State

Demario Richard, Arizona State

Ashton Shumpert, Mississippi State

William Stanback, UCF

Chris Swain, Navy

Anthone Taylor, Buffalo

Jahad Thomas, Temple

Shane Tucker, Middle Tennessee

Thomas Tyner, Oregon

Marteze Waller, Fresno State

DeAndre Washington, Texas Tech

Dwayne Washington, Washington

Ralph Webb, Vanderbilt

Shaun Wick, Wyoming

Brandon Wilds, South Carolina

Jamaal Williams, BYU

Jonathan Williams, Arkansas

Nick Wilson, Arizona