Running Back Success Rates | Week 3

Kevin C. Cox

It's time for some RBSR analysis.

A quick reminder about what constitutes a "successful" run - a run is considered successful under the following conditions:

  • On first down, the runner must gain 40%+ of the yardage necessary to reach a first down.
  • On second downs, the runner must gain 60%+ of the remaining yardage necessary for a first down.
  • On third and fourth downs, the runner must gain 100%+ of the remaining yardage necessary for a first down.

To put some simple numbers to it, if a runner ran the ball three consecutive times in a standard 1st and 10 situation, he would have to gain 4 yards on first down (40% of 10 yards), 4 yards on second down (60% of 6 yards), and 2 yards on third or fourth down (100% of the remaining 2 yards).

Now let's see how everyone performed in week three.

Week 3 (sortable)

Team Player Week Total # Attempts Successful Attempts Success Rate Yards Gained Yards Per Carry
Alabama T.J. Yeldon 3 25 18 72.0% 164 6.6
Alabama Jalston Fowler 3 4 4 100.0% 37 9.3
Alabama Kenyan Drake 3 7 4 57.1% 50 7.1
Arkansas Jonathan Williams 3 16 9 56.3% 116 7.3
Arkansas Alex Collins 3 25 14 56.0% 115 4.6
Auburn Corey Grant 3 8 3 37.5% 44 5.5
Auburn Cameron Artis-Payne 3 6 2 33.3% 12 2.0
Auburn Tre Mason 3 10 4 40.0% 34 3.4
LSU Alfred Blue 3 9 8 88.9% 54 6.0
LSU Terrence Magee 3 9 7 77.8% 98 10.9
LSU Jeremy Hill 3 11 7 63.6% 117 10.6
Ole Miss Jeff Scott 3 20 13 65.0% 162 8.1
Miss St LaDarius Perkins 3 8 3 37.5% 36 4.5
Texas A&M Ben Malena 3 11 7 63.6% 42 3.8
Texas A&M Tra Carson 3 5 2 40.0% 18 3.6
Kentucky Raymond Sanders 3 6 2 33.3% 16 2.7
South Carolina Mike Davis 3 17 10 58.8% 77 4.5
Tennessee Rajion Neal 3 12 3 25.0% 42 3.5
Vanderbilt Wesley Tate 3 10 7 70.0% 71 7.1

We'll get to the rest of the conference in a bit, but let's start off by talking about the I'm sure I wasn't the only one sitting in my living room wondering aloud (quite loud, at times) why weren't giving the ball to Jalston Fowler more. I think these numbers back that up. Fowler was an absolute beast on Saturday, the few times we let him carry the rock. I was thinking any minute we'd see Brandon Green come in at full back with Fowler powering behind him. Outside of the Fowler Boom Train, TJ Yeldon had a pretty busy day, carrying the ball 25 times, which was tied for the most of any SEC running back this week. 25 carries also ties him for second for most carries by an SEC running back in a single game so far this season. The rest of the stats make it clear why we kept feeding Yeldon, as he had a super-healthy 72% success rate and averaged six and a half yards a carry.

On the other side of the field, the Texas A&M running backs combined for a 56.25% success rate and a 3.75 yards per carry average. The most telling stat, though, is that they combined for 16 carries. While the YPC wasn't great, it is still a bit surprising that A&M so readily abandoned the run, given the relative success they had with it.

Cumulative (sortable)

Team Player Games Total # Att Successful Att Success Rate Yards Gained Yards Per Carry
Alabama T.J. Yeldon 2 42 28 66.7% 239 5.7
Alabama Jalston Fowler 2 6 4 66.7% 38 6.3
Alabama Kenyan Drake 1 7 4 57.1% 50 7.1
Alabama Dee Hart 1 5 1 20.0% 15 3.0
Alabama Altee Tenpenny 1 6 2 33.3% 24 4.0
Alabama Derrick Henry 1 2 0 0.0% -3 -1.5
Arkansas Jonathan Williams 3 42 28 66.7% 239 5.7
Arkansas Alex Collins 3 71 42 59.2% 424 6.0
Auburn Corey Grant 3 24 16 66.7% 237 9.9
Auburn Cameron Artis-Payne 3 35 20 57.1% 166 4.7
Auburn Tre Mason 3 40 22 55.0% 201 5.0
LSU Alfred Blue 3 31 18 58.1% 151 4.9
LSU Terrence Magee 3 26 13 50.0% 200 7.7
LSU Jeremey Hill 2 17 11 64.7% 182 10.7
Ole Miss Jeff Scott 3 36 22 61.1% 318 8.8
Miss St LaDarius Perkins 2 24 7 29.2% 86 3.6
Texas A&M Ben Malena 3 33 25 75.8% 221 6.7
Texas A&M Tra Carson 3 28 23 82.1% 145 5.2
Florida Mack Brown 2 35 18 51.4% 131 3.7
Georgia Todd Gurley 2 42 23 54.8% 301 7.2
Georgia Keith Marshall 2 23 10 43.5% 101 4.4
Kentucky Raymond Sanders 3 26 13 50.0% 153 5.9
Missouri Henry Josey 2 23 15 65.2% 137 6.0
South Carolina Mike Davis 3 45 25 55.6% 341 7.6
Tennessee Rajion Neal 3 43 29 67.4% 247 5.7
Vanderbilt Wesley Tate 3 32 16 50.0% 127 4.0

With two games down, Yeldon's RBSR and YPC are both looking pretty healthy. Also, look at his total carries. The only players that have more touches have played an extra game. While it is still early in the season, at this point, it looks like our run distribution is going to be less of a "running back by committee" approach, and more of a "workhorse that get's spelled" approach.

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