Brian Hill

Associated Press

Henry, Elliott, Cook, Fournette highlight Doak Walker semifinalists

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One former and three current Heisman front-runners headline the the 11-player-strong list of semifinalists for the Doak Walker Award, the PwC SMU Athletic Forum announced Wednesday.

Of the 11 semifinalists, 10 come from a Power Five conference or Notre Dame.  The only Group of Five player up for an award handed out annually to the nation’s top running back is Wyoming’s Brian Hill.

There are three running backs generally considered as the favorites for this year’s Heisman Trophy — Florida State’s Dalvin Cook, Ohio State’s Ezekiel Elliott and Alabama’s Derrick Henry.  LSU’s Leonard Fournette was the stiff-armed front-runner for the first 10 weeks or so of the season.  Those four are Walker semifinalists, as is Stanford’s Christian McCaffrey, who’s on the periphery of the Heisman discussion as well.

Aside from the six previously mentioned, the other five semifinalists are Utah’s Devontae Booker, Arkansas’ Alex Collins, Oregon’s Royce Freeman, Baylor’s Shock Linwood and Notre Dame’s C.J. Prosise.

Booker and Prosise are the only seniors in the group, while Collins, Elliott, Henry and Linwood are juniors.  The other five are sophomores.

Wisconsin’s Melvin Gordon ran away with last year’s award, with all three finalists coming from Big Ten teams.  This year’s three finalists will be announced Nov. 24.