Published March 14, 2013 - 8:35am
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Now with National Signing Day in the books, let’s look at the top newcomers in the SEC for 2013. Predicting the top newcomers is often very tough, and these aren’t just merely rankings of the top players. We’re going to look at what type of impact they’ll make and where they’ll make it.
No. 7 – Cameron Artis-Payne, RB, Auburn
From: Harrisburg, PA (Alan Hancock College)
Size: 5-11, 212 pounds
The Skinny: JUCO transfer and current early enrollee running back Cameron Artis-Payne will make an immediate impact. Not only is CAP very talented, but he’s a bruiser who’s ready for the day-in and day-out SEC punishment of running between the tackles. CAP will remind you a little bit of former Auburn running back Michael Dyer, with his 210-pound body ready for reckless abandon, and let’s hope that’s where the comparisons stop. Not only does CAP possess all the physical abilities to tote the rock in the SEC, but his vision is what stands out after he gets through the first level of defense. CAP rushed for 2,048 yards and 25 touchdowns last season.
What Auburn is getting: The Tigers return only one proven running back in Tre Mason from last year’s team, and with the attrition of Mike Blakely and the loss of Onterio McCalebb, CAP enters ready to contend for a starting spot. Although Gus Malzahn’s offense is known for attacking the edges of the defense, a big part of the running game attacks the teeth of the defense in the middle, too. The fact that CAP is an early enrollee bodes well for an immediate splash, and he’ll have this spring to get comfortable with the system and style of offense. CAP isn’t the SEC’s most talented newcomer, even as a running back, but the lack of depth and returners will help give him an opportunity to make an immediate impact in 2013.
Other impact newcomers:
- No. 8 Derrick Henry, Alabama
- No. 9 Tre’Davious White, LSU
- No. 10 Alex Collins, Arkansas
- No. 11 Chris Jones, Miss State
- No. 12 Za’Darius Smith, Kentucky
- No. 13 OJ Howard, Alabama
- No. 14 Marquez North, Tennessee
- No. 15 Ricky Seals-Jones, Texas A&M
- No. 16 Leon Brown, Alabama
- No. 17 Fred Ross, Mississippi State
- No. 18 Tray Matthews, Georgia
- No. 19 Jonathan Allen, Alabama
- No. 20 Ben Bradley, Auburn
- No. 21 Alex Anzalone, Florida
- No. 22 Carl Lawson, Auburn
- No. 23 Frank Herron, LSU
- No. 24 Larenz Bryant, South Carolina
- No. 25 Ryan Timmons, Kentucky
Photo Credit: John Reed-USA TODAY Sports