They called him a throw in to get his brother. They thought he would make a decent fullback or linebacker. They had him rated as a two star or three star prospect on recruiting networks. “They” were all dead wrong about D’Onta Foreman. The Texas running back is outperforming all expectations set for him for when he arrived in Austin, and now he is making his case for winning the Doak Walker and is also making a case to receive an invite to New York for the Heisman trophy.
Through eight games this season, Foreman has accumulated 1,446 and 13 touchdowns on the ground, which is 2nd most among all FBS rushers and he leads the nation in rushing yards per game at 180.8. Foreman’s impressive stat line lacks a full game against UTEP early on in the season, in which the Texas staff opted to hold him out to get him healthy and well rested for conference play. Additionally, Foreman missed part of the Oklahoma State game after sustaining an injury on a scoring play. Despite missing some time in 2016, Foreman has cracked 100 yards on the ground in each game he has played in this year, and has a streak of 10 straight games with his accomplishment dating back to last year.
In the last two weeks alone, Foreman has rushed for 591 yards against Baylor and Texas Tech combined and has put himself on squarely on the national radar for some post season accolades. Coming into the season, running backs like Leonard Fournette, Dalvin Cook, and Christian McCaffrey were all household names and were expected to make serious Heisman pushes before potentially making the leap to the NFL, but instead Foreman has come from off the radar and is now not only getting some buzz for an invitation to New York, but he is also on the rise for many NFL Draft analysts and has successfully shed his sleeper status.
Before I continue on, I want to say that I still think Louisville quarterback Lamar Jackson is the frontrunner for the Heisman as things sit today. Jackson has been putting up video game numbers all year long and still has three games left to pad his stats against a schedule that isn’t exactly the stiffest. With that said, I think Foreman has absolutely put himself in a position to earn himself an invite alongside Jackson, and if you think Foreman is a product of a down Big 12 conference this year, then chew on this for a minute. The conference’s 2nd leading rusher (Joe
Mixon of Oklahoma) trails Foreman’s yardage output by 633 yards (813 rushing yards). While the Big 12 hasn’t exactly been the poster child for stiff defensive challenges over the years, it would be unfair to Foreman for people to try to devalue what he has accomplished this year when no other runner in the conference is having the kind of year he is having.
If Foreman wasn’t forced to sit out the UTEP game at the beginning of the season, I think he could be making a serious run at 2000 yards rushing this year. With three games left on the schedule and with how hot he has been the past couple weeks, it isn’t totally out of the question for him to still make a credible run at that number, but it would take some huge performances on his part to get there. In a year where the running back position is absolutely loaded with studs, D’Onta Foreman has arguably been the best of them all, and in my mind that puts him on the Heisman ballot in my book. He may not win it, but he absolutely deserves to be in the conversation in my opinion.
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