FAYETTEVILLE — ESPN has started its top players at each position for college football with quarterback and running back now completed.
They list the Top 10 players at that position and at quarterback they listed several others who got votes. Junior running back Raheim “Rocket” Sanders is rated No. 3 in the nation at his position. Redshirt senior quarterback KJ Jefferson is No. 12 and in the also receiving votes group.
In 2022, Sanders rushed 222 times for 1,443 yards and 10 touchdowns. He also caught 28 passes for 271 yards and two touchdowns. ESPN rated Michigan’s Blake Corum No. 1 and Ole Miss’ Quinshon Judkins second. Corum received 105 points from the ESPN staff, 9 of 11 first-place votes, then Judkins 85 points and received the other two picks for first. Sanders received 71 points. Alex Scarborough wrote this about Sanders.
“How do you fly under the radar with a nickname like Rocket? But that’s exactly what happened with Sanders last season thanks to Arkansas’ subpar 7-6 finish. The offense as a whole struggled, due in large part to quarterback KJ Jefferson battling injuries. But Sanders more than held up his end of the bargain, ranking second in the SEC in rushing yards (1,443) and third in rushing touchdowns (10). A healthy Jefferson could make a speedy Sanders even better, and the two could form one of the best QB-RB rushing duos in the SEC.”
Jefferson received 11 points in the voting. In 2022, Jefferson completed 204 of 300 passes for 2,648 yards, 24 touchdowns and five interceptions. He also rushed 158 times for 640 yards and nine touchdowns.
LSU’s Jayden Daniels is No. 9 and tops in the SEC. Daniels received 25 points. Mississippi State’s Will Rogers received 14 points to edge Jefferson for No. 11. Other SEC quarterbacks receiving points are South Carolina’s Spencer Rattler (4), Kentucky’s Devin Leary (3), Tennessee’s Joe Milton III (2) and Ole Miss’ Spencer Sanders (1).
USC’s Caleb Williams is rated the No. 1 quarterback followed, in order, by Washington’s Michael Penix Jr, North Carolina’s Drake Maye, Oregon’s Bo Nix and Florida State’s Jordan Travis. Kansas’ Jalon Daniels, who Arkansas faced in the AutoZone Liberty Bowl, was No. 10.