Before he was even officially a Georgia Bulldog, Isaiah Crowell had mountains of expectations placed on him by Bulldawg Nation. He is considered by many to be the most important recruit in the Mark Richt era, and in some ways that may be true. Richt has been adamant about how he feels that Crowell will be playing and how much he will be playing this season.
I’ll start off by saying that I think that Crowell is extremely talented, as does everyone else. He was the nation’s top running back recruit this past recruiting class, and undoubtedly has as many expectations put on him as any other player in the class.
However, he seems to be set up for failure, not because of his talent but because of the expectations. Many fans expect him to have a Marcus Lattimore-type impact on the team, and while he may do that, it is more likely that he has a good size impact and sets up for a big future.
It is these expectations that are going to make Crowell seem like a disappointment to some people. Caleb King came in with the same expectations, and has to this point not lived up to them. It was the same with Jasper Sanks, another Carver High School running back.
There are still some very reasonable people though that think that King is still going to be very important to this team, and I could see him with more carries than Crowell this season. I could be wrong though, but I’ll be sticking to that until I see otherwise.
I do believe that Crowell will be starting when the Bulldogs play against Boise State September 3rd. I just think that his inexperience will put King in a slightly better position to get more touches, at least to start with.
If things work out the right way though, Crowell will become the next tailback sensation in the country and will lead the Georgia Bulldogs to an SEC East crown if not more. I hope this is what happens, but I’m just trying to stay as realistic as I can. There will be things that Crowell will have to learn, and from what I understand some of the early workouts have been pretty rough on him (as well as others on the team).
The coaches are going to work Crowell into the shape that they think he needs to be to be the top running back, and no matter how much he learns from now until the Boise State game, King is still going to get a good bit of playing time because of his ability to block and the experience he has. He will have to bring the veteran leadership to the position and guide Crowell through some of the struggles that he will have.
Of course, some are still questioning whether King will even be eligible or not (Richt is on record saying that he will be eligible). If he’s not, the Crowell will be the top Dawg with no questions asked. If he does separate himself as much as other people think that he will, Crowell could very well push the 1,000-yard mark as a freshman.
After all, the experts can’t all be wrong, can they?