Offseason spotlight: Georgia

January, 27, 2012
1/27/12
9:13
AM ET
Our offseason spotlight continues with the Georgia Bulldogs:

Spotlight: Isaiah Crowell, running back, 5-11, 215, rising sophomore

2011 summary: Named the SEC Freshman of the Year by the Associated Press, Crowell started in seven games and led the Bulldogs in rushing with 847 yards. He had four 100-yard games, but tailed off toward the end of the season and was slowed by injuries. In his last three games, including the bowl game and SEC title game, Crowell managed just 18 rushing yards on 15 carries. That's not counting the Georgia Tech game, which he missed after injuring his ankle the week before against Kentucky.

The skinny: One way or the other, we're going to find out a lot about Crowell this offseason. He's a wonderful physical talent and demonstrated in stretches this past season that he can be a big-time SEC tailback. But he has a long way to go in terms of his mental toughness, durability and overall maturity before he can be considered one of the marquee backs in this league. Plus, he has some serious competition. The Bulldogs went out and signed Keith Marshall, rated by ESPN as the No. 2 running back prospect in the country. Marshall is already in school and will participate in spring practice. Georgia also has another top running back prospect committed in this class, Todd Gurley, who's rated as the No. 12 running back nationally. Crowell has said all of the right things, that he needs to be more accountable and work harder every day. He's going to need to if he doesn't want to get passed up in the rotation. The Georgia fans actually booed him in the SEC title game because they weren't sold on his toughness or his overall commitment. This thing could go either way for Crowell, who's not unlike a lot of freshmen in some ways. He just had so much hype coming in. But now's the time for him to realize that he has to bring it in every practice and every game, get in tip-top physical condition and be that consistent threat in the running game that the Bulldogs will need next season.

Other spotlights:

Alabama

Arkansas

Auburn

Florida

Chris Low | email

College Football

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