USC Football: Stephen Carr named to Doak Walker Award Watch List for 2018

Alicia de Artola/Reign of Troy
Alicia de Artola/Reign of Troy /

USC football’s Stephen Carr was named to the Doak Walker Award Watch List as one of the top running backs with potential for big season in 2018.

Stephen Carr’s star continues to shine this offseason with another spot on a preseason watch list.

The Doak Walker Award named their 2018 watch list on Wednesday as they search for the nation’s best running back. Carr, as expected, made the cut.

Carr was placed on the Maxwell Award Watch List on Monday.

There’s an argument for Carr being on the Walker Watch List simply by virtue of being USC’s projected starting running back for 2018. Watch lists aren’t known for being particularly discerning with dozens of players included each summer.

However, to say Carr only belongs because he’s atop the depth chart at USC overlooks the potential he displayed as a freshman in 2017. He rushed for 309 yards and three touchdowns with 5.94 yards per carry in September last year before an ankle injury curtailed his production for much of the rest of the season. In that opening month, he ran with purpose, taking what was there like a veteran while also finding home run opportunities with his breakaway speed.

Going into his sophomore campaign, Carr will have to prove he can carry the load like Ronald Jones II before him. And he’ll have to do so while clearing the hurdle of offseason back surgery, which kept him out of Spring Camp.

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If healthy, there’s little doubt Carr can get the job done. Pursuing a national honor like the Walker Award could very well come down the line.

To do that, Carr and the Trojans will have to go through a number of other Walker Award watch listers. In Week 2 USC will battle Stanford’s Bryce Love, the reigning Walker Award winner. The Trojans will end September against Arizona’s J.J. Taylor, then travel to face Utah’s Zach Moss in Salt Lake City in Week 8. Week 9 will bring Arizona State’s Eno Benjamin to the Coliseum followed by Cal’s Patrick Laird two weeks later.

USC could also face Oregon’s Tony Brooks-James or Washington’s Myles Gaskin in the Pac-12 title game.

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Surprisingly enough, the Trojans have only produced one Doak Walker Award winner: Reggie Bush in 2005. That’s explained easily enough though. The award has only existed since 1990, after USC’s string of Heisman-winning running backs.