Who will transform tomorrow?

September, 7, 2012
9/07/12
9:00
AM ET
My player to watch in Week 2 is Miami running back Duke Johnson.

We heard the hype about Johnson all summer, but on Saturday against Boston College, he let his play do all the talking. He could do it again this weekend at No. 22-ranked Kansas State.

Johnson, making his debut as a true freshman on the road, ran for 135 yards and two touchdowns on seven carries last weekend. The 135 yards were the most rushing yards for a Hurricane true freshman since Javarris James in 2006. Johnson became the first UM freshman running back to rush for 100 or more yards in his first college game since Clinton Portis in 1999.

After Johnson ran 54 yards for a touchdown, LeBron James (@KingJames) tweeted: Duke Johnson is the truth out there for the U! True freshman. #speedkills

Golden praised Johnson this week for his toughness, maturity, preparation and practice habits.

“I don't think there's any question,” Golden said. “There's talented players and talented people all over the place, but from day one you don't have to tell them to finish a rep or how important it is to study, how unselfish he is. He'll line up anywhere we put him. He'll block anybody we tell him to block. I think that's what makes him different.

“Again, it's one game. We got to keep it in perspective. He's got a long way to go. He came into this program with a lot of those qualities, and we're trying to help him polish those skills up.”

Any more polish and he'll have a shiny Rookie of the Year trophy at the end of the season.

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