10 best HS running backs: Can Chubb hit 3,000?

Our look at the best high school football players in Georgia continues today with 10 running backs.

Remember that these are not recruiting rankings. These players have been selected primarily on their high school production and their value to their high school teams.

Let us know who you think we missed.

- Kwan Brooks, Monroe Area: Brooks rushed for 1,916 yards and 18 touchdowns for a 12-2 team in 2012. It was Monroe Area’s first trip to the state semifinals. Brooks had seven touchdown runs of longer than 50 yards. Brooks is 5-9, 165. He’s not getting the same recruiting attention as his backfield mate, quarterback Stanton Truitt, but that will change if he gets his academics in order.

- Kawon Bryant, North Oconee: A rising junior, Bryant played only seven games last season on a 10-2 team because of injuries. He for 1,146 yards and 14 touchdowns. He rushed for 204 yards against Jefferson as a freshman.

- Esaias Chapman, Harris County: Chapman rushed for 2,124 yards and scored 22 touchdowns for a team that finished 8-5 and lost to eventual champion Gainesville in the Class AAAAA quarterfinals. He was a big reason that the team won eight straight after an 0-8 start. He’s 5-9, 190. He is being recruited by East Carolina and Pitt, although neither has offered.

- Nick Chubb, Cedartown: Chubb rushed for 2,721 yards and 38 touchdowns on 312 carries in his record-setting junior season. He did it in 10 games, as Cedartown failed to make the playoffs. It’s the best regular season for rushing yards in state history. Only two  Georgia running backs have hit 3,000 yards rushing in a season. They are Daccus Turman and Herschel Walker. Chubb is the consensus top running recruit in the state.

- Jeremiah Kirkland, Lovejoy: Kirkland rushed for 2,007 yards and scored 26 touchdowns on 263 carries (over 20 per game) last season for Landmark Christian, which made the Class A private semifinals. Now he’s at Class AAAAAA runner-up Lovejoy, where he’ll help fill the graduation void of Travis Custis (Georgia Tech).

- Treyvon Paulk, Milton: Paulk rushed for more than 1,100 yards last season and scored 17 touchcdowns. It would’ve been much more except that Milton’s feature back was Peyton Barber (1,713 yards), who signed with Auburn. Paulk, who is 5-10, 190,  is committed to Tennessee.

- Dallas Rivers, Stephenson: Rivers rushed for 1,110 yards and scored 14 touchdowns on 163 carries last season for Tucker while sharing the load in the Wing T. He transferred in January to Stephenson, which could make him the focus of the offense. Rivers has committed to Vanderbilt.

- Rodney Smith, Mundy’s Mill: Smith tore an ACL in the first half of the ninth game last season. He already had 196 yards on seven carries in the game. He wound up with 1,575 yards and 20 touchdowns on the season, averaging 9.2 yards per carry. His team finished 4-6, which helps keep Smith under the radar. “Rodney is an SEC running back,’’ said his coach, Greg Manior. “Everybody is just waiting to see [about his knee]. He’s 80 percent, still doing therapy. He hopes to be ready end of July, start of August. Whoever gives him a shot is going to get a steal.’’ Georgia Tech, Georgia and Virginia Tech are among those that have visited and expressed interest.

- Eric Swinney, Sandy Creek: Swinney rushed for 1,414 yards and 23 touchdowns on 161 carries (8.8 ypc) as a sophomore on a state championship team. Perhaps the top junior RB prospect in the state, Swinney has offers from Minnesota, Tennessee, Ole Miss, UNC, N.C. State, Vanderbilt and Virginia Tech.

- Stanley Williams, George Walton Academy: Williams rushed for 1,948 yards and 24 touchdowns on 182 carries (over 10 ypc) in 2012 as George Walton advanced to the Class A private semifinals. He’s 5-8, 185. He had the fastest 100-meters time in the state this year at 10.92 seconds. Williams has several major college offers and once was committed to Georgia.

41 comments Add your comment

In the Know

May 16th, 2013
10:21 am

Thomas Sieh class of 2015 form Paulding County is going to be a monster this year. 805 yards in 8 games last year after coming back from a high ankle sprain. 5′10″ 226, State place at 200 in wrestling as a sophmore. Darkhouse to watch

WarEagle

May 16th, 2013
10:48 am

Tucker fans — why did Dallas Rivers transfer?

Trojan94

May 16th, 2013
10:48 am

One of the best unknown RB is trey chivers of carrollton 800 yards rushing 700 yards receiving 17 TD. That’s pretty good concidering the fact that last year was his first year starting varsity and he did both out the wing-t. Also I think devin weems of sandy creek is just as good as his backfield mate these are just my opinion

Marietta fan

May 16th, 2013
11:18 am

Watch out for Kervonte Benson from Marietta this year. He is a rising junior who can be very explosive. He already has 2 state championships in the hundred meter dash.

Jefferson

May 16th, 2013
12:12 pm

Dalton has a pretty good back up there.

PBJ

May 16th, 2013
12:25 pm

Just think about this for a minute, Kawon Bryant, lived in Monroe up until the 7th grade and because of his personal life, moved to live with his new guardian that lives in Oconee County.And Kwon Brooks at Monroe Area, needs to get his academics in order along with an attitude, I heard he was suspended a couple of weeks ago and could participate in the state track meet to defend their state championship they won last year in the ” 4×100 & 4×400 ” relays.

WarEagle

May 16th, 2013
12:28 pm

@Trojan94 — Was really impressed with Chivers last season in the Carrollton v. Marist playoff game. Excellent player.

Metro Fan

May 16th, 2013
1:15 pm

Jordan Ellis at Peachtree Ridge won the team’s offensive MVP last season and will definitely explode onto the scene as a senior this year… The next in a long line of DeKalb players to shine in Gwinnett.

Todd Holcomb

May 16th, 2013
1:24 pm

Cold Hard Facts – Thanks for the info for Kirkland. His bio is edited. I understand that Lovejoy has a new QB (transfer). Do you have any news on that?

Trojan94

May 16th, 2013
2:18 pm

@WarEagles I wish you could have had a chance to see out freshman #2 jarvis terrell last year, he had the flu and didn’t play in the carrollton/Marist game this kid is the next big thing coming out of carrollton.

1bighammer

May 16th, 2013
2:40 pm

@Trojan94 …Chivers is a good one. Ihtink the versatile backs that rin and recieve are sometimes overlooked in these “best of” lists.

Weems at Sandy Creek is a beast in his own right. Look for him and Swinney to have BIG 2013 seasons.

sportsnut

May 16th, 2013
2:55 pm

Kirkland running behind that Lovejoy line will pay off big time. Do not expect the QB transfer to man that position. Cameron Hill will be the starter barring injury . Quinton Neely, the transfer, is an upcoming sophomore, according to the homepage for Mays High. He has speed with what seems like an inner clock that says when to run. Maybe in 14′ or 15′, he starts. Khalil Rogers has started on the 9th grade and the JV and is making this a true battle. Cameron has the edge because of experience. Never understood why Kirkland left in the first place. Both the JV and the 9th grade teams have been doing well for the entire time he was gone. That is for those who did not know that he was a running back at Lovejoy Middle before transfering to Landmark.. Good to have him back.

sportsnut

May 16th, 2013
3:35 pm

Correction on the class of Neely. He will be a junior next season.

John

May 16th, 2013
3:46 pm

Myron Washington of Rome rushed for 1,351 yards in 2012 despite missing two games due to injuries. He will be a senior this year. Frank Griffin, who also will be a senior, rushed for 1,060 yards, including a 95 yard touchdown against Lithia Springs that tied the all time Rome Wolves record.

sportsnut

May 16th, 2013
3:52 pm

Takes alot of work to get the truth. Maybe by time the season starts, I will know what I’m talking about.

sportsnut

May 16th, 2013
4:03 pm

Not finished yet. Info still coming in. Neely was a freshman this season and did not throw a pass according to my latest source. Maybe this is why he has the thought to run. I checked the stats for Mays and it appears he did not play or did not handle the ball at all, if he did play. Coach likes what he brings and who knows, this might be a “Diamond in the Rough”.

CHEE MAN

May 16th, 2013
4:13 pm

@peanut butter and jelly, Ok, I’ve thought about it for a minute. But, I’m not sure what I’m supposed to understand by giving the requested thought. You are talking about Kawon Bryant of North Oconee and Kwon Brooks of Monroe Area, is your point that they could be in the same backfield? Or are you trying to say they took different paths to get where they are now? I’ve seen both play and they are both excellent backs. Brooks needs to grow some but has great athletic ability. Bryant is a physical specimen and a beast. Looking forward to seeing them both in action this fall!

Joe from Monroe

May 16th, 2013
4:53 pm

Impressive that three of the ten are from Monroe, Ga. All three are excellent running backs. Good luck to all three! Can’t wait to see you go far!

redhot

May 16th, 2013
6:57 pm

kentavious thomas Baldwin High School yall pls go to youtube and look at dis kid

JAB

May 16th, 2013
8:13 pm

Stephenson will win it (ALL) in 2013 with Dallas Rivers…

SouthATLnative

May 16th, 2013
8:14 pm

HaHaHaHaHa… Stephenson will win it all!!!!!!!!! APRIL FOOL’S

That Dude Says...

May 16th, 2013
8:14 pm

Sandy Creeks offense is SLAP LOADED for this coming season!! QB Garvin, Swinney and don’t forget Weems in the backfield also, and then Demarre Kitt who is the of best WR in the country. Teams couldn’t stop them last year. This coming year is going to unreal for them.

JAB

May 16th, 2013
8:15 pm

War Eagle, I think he lives in the Stephenson area and feel that he has a better chance of starting over there…

JAB

May 16th, 2013
8:17 pm

SouthATLnative Stephenson was on a roll in the playoff until there QB went down during the game against Ware county. They are are a proven top quality team

JAB

May 16th, 2013
8:17 pm

SouthATLnative

May 16th, 2013
8:38 pm

JAB, no offense, but let’s look at this with an open mind. Stephenson signs 20+ kids EVERY YEAR, and they do a great job of getting kids into college. However, with that being said, they can NEVER close the deal… with that kind of talent, they should have rings on all fingers and even a couple toes…
They gotta prove it to the State first, then you can run your mouth.

Camden74

May 16th, 2013
8:47 pm

That’s a whole lot of TRANSFERRING!!!! :-)

redhot

May 16th, 2013
8:48 pm

http://youtu.be/XXw0JJrDSIo kentavious thomas baldwin high school he can run,block,catch,and run over people not one back in yo top ten can do all thats he just not getting all da love because he play at baldwin . go 2 da links he just dont have them rushing yards because da team pass 90 percents of da time

redhot

May 16th, 2013
8:51 pm

for got c/o 2015 5′11 210

NoDistrictLineInDekalb

May 16th, 2013
9:20 pm

Another high school football story and yet another transfer. Why? What I have heard is he is not the only Tucker kid that transferred. I guess he could not beat out the Dunwoody kid who transferred to Tucker. Hey @Camden you have to buy the Dekalb County football program otherwise you will never know who you are playing against. GHSA is powerless to do anything see the Norcross new QB from Milton.

NoDistrictLineInDekalb

May 16th, 2013
9:28 pm

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=maL_bOp_ozU Dallas Rivers highlites but the audio could have been left out !

BU Wolves Fan

May 16th, 2013
10:48 pm

Lot’s of great backs on that list! To me the most talented back I saw all last season was the Bryant kid at North Oconee. Seems to be the total package. And we have a pretty good 2015 RB ourselves here in B-town!

colquittcountyhawg

May 17th, 2013
8:15 am

although he is a qb he is being recruited as a running back adam choice tcchs is the best i have seen the last couple of years.

Todd Holcomb

May 17th, 2013
8:57 am

”although he is a qb he is being recruited as a running back adam choice tcchs is the best i have seen the last couple of years.”

Choice made our Top 10 QB list. -

http://blogs.ajc.com/georgia-high-school-sports/2013/05/15/10-best-quarterbacks-watson-heads-list/

re: Myron Washington – He just missed the cut. You make a strong case that he should be there. But we’re definitely aware of the RB from Rome.

Bill Cosby

May 17th, 2013
12:30 pm

Justin Crawford is the best RB in the State GA. Better than Chubb.
http://www.hudl.com/athlete/2169878/#highlights/35193376

@Bill Cosby

May 17th, 2013
1:05 pm

I get the joke now

First Down Creek!!!!

May 17th, 2013
2:34 pm

Swinney from Sandy Creek splits time with Delvin Weems at running back otherwise his stats would be insane, but there is no way you can have a guy like Weems sitting on the bench. They are both very good backs.

BIG BOY

May 17th, 2013
2:34 pm

@Bill Cosby : “Justin Crawford is the best RB in the state GA. Better than Chubb”
- said Mr. Crawford

2000 DeKalb County Defensive Player of the Year

May 17th, 2013
2:53 pm

Stephenson had their spring game yesterday. The team is very big (but not deep) along the front lines… SHS also has the most talent in school history at the perimeter positions (WR, DB). I thought the QB play was somewhat suspect, but those kids are young and will gain the necessary experience.

Ga recruiting

May 17th, 2013
9:53 pm

Missed 2014 RB Maetron thomas out of Stockbridge high school.

Todd Holcomb

May 18th, 2013
12:54 pm

re: Maetron – Stockbridge should have a helluva backfield w/ Maetron and Malik Bryan. I understand Metron has a lot of mid-major offers and is being recruited by West Virginia. Good to see Stockbridge on the football radar after years of struggle.