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Column: Let’s discuss the running back situation

Up to this point in the season, Miyan Williams has 42 more yards than TreVeyon Henderson, yet Tre has six more carries. Is this what we expected?

NCAA Football: Iowa at Ohio State Joseph Maiorana-USA TODAY Sports

One of the biggest surprises this season from the Buckeye offense has been the emergence of Miyan Williams, and how much he has improved from last season. As a result of his success, TreVeyon Henderson has been getting a lot fewer snaps than last season, and overall just hasn’t seemed as dominant. What is happening?

Obviously, the Buckeye offense looks a lot different than last season. They have added a lot more weapons and introduced basically a brand new receiving core with JSN out. As I mentioned, Williams is getting a lot more playing time, now splitting reps with Henderson. Henderson had an absolute monster season as a freshman, finishing with over 1,200 rushing yards and being named a Doak Walker Award semi-finalist.

Syndication: The Columbus Dispatch Kyle Robertson/Columbus Dispatch / USA TODAY NETWORK

Fast forward to this season, he has 474 rushing yards compared to Williams’ 516. Granted, they both missed separate games, so that cancels any potential outliers. However, there is no clear RB1 on this team, which I think makes it difficult for either back to grow and reach their fullest potential.

It’s hard for Henderson to top last season’s greatness when he isn’t getting the same amount of snaps as he was then. On the flip side, Williams is having a phenomenal season because of the amount of snaps he is getting this season. In fact, he already has more carries at this point in the season then he did all of last year.

I don’t think this is a problem, though. Obviously both guys are still experiencing a ton of success. It’s just different than last season. Williams was the power back, the bulldozer on third downs. But, after losing weight during the offseason, he became a speed back as well, since he is still a tank.

Henderson is traditionally a speed back and is smaller than Williams, which I think is one of the reasons why he is getting fewer snaps. While Williams can be used in pretty much all situations, Henderson wouldn’t be the go-to guy on a third down or when the team just needs a couple of yards for a first down.

Syndication: The Columbus Dispatch Barbara J. Perenic/Columbus Dispatch / USA TODAY NETWORK

Let me reiterate: I don’t think this is a bad thing. The offense is very supportive of one another, so it’s not like Henderson is angry at the coaching staff or Williams because he isn’t getting as many carries. As a duo, they are getting the job done extremely well, and both of them are always a threat. Rotating them during the game ensures they both stay fresh, so they can both play to the best of their abilities.

The RB situation I think is a big part of why this team is doing so well this season. Yes, the receivers have been absolutely unreal. However, having a one-two punch at running back as well adds a constant rush threat, making opposing team’s defenses throw up their hands. If both backs can stay healthy, this could be a historic season for both guys.