The Illinois football team has had productive running back play throughout the 2010s.
The most consistent production of offense has come from the Illini running back positions during the 2010s. Most of these players’ stats won’t wow you, but they were able to give Illinois reliable players in the backfield.
Here are the top five running backs of the 2010s for the Illinois football team.
5. Ke’Shawn Vaughn
The first player on this list is somebody who I believe could have ended up No.1 on this list if he stayed at Illinois and got the touches he deserved. Ke’Shawn Vaughn was a four-star recruit coming out of high school. Illini fans had high hopes for the talented running back.
In his first year, Vaughn impressed fans with his ability to be a threat in the run game and in the passing game. Vaughn rushed for 723 yards and 6 touchdowns while averaging 4.6 yards a carry on 157 total carries. Vaughn showed off his ability to be a threat in the passing game as well, catching 16 passes for 119 yards.
Vaughn’s second season was underwhelming. Illinois’ offensive coordinator misused him, resulting in his stats getting worse. Vaughn’s rushing stats consisted of 301 yards and 3 touchdowns while averaging 5.0 yards per carry on 60 total carries. Compared to the previous year, Vaughn wasn’t a factor in the passing game. He caught 9 passes for 89 yards.
After spending two years with Illinois, Vaughn decided to transfer to Vanderbilt. He went on two have two 1,000-yard rushing seasons and got drafted to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.