Canadian running back Chase Brown wasted little time being recognized for his stellar play at the University of Illinois this season.
The London, Ont. native was named the Doak Walker National Running Back of the Week after recording 36 carries for 199 yards in his team’s 23-20 loss to Indiana this past weekend. He currently leads the entire NCAA with 350 rushing yards through two games this year.
The five-foot-eleven, 205-pound ball carrier rushed for 151 yards and two touchdowns in Illinois’ 38-6 season-opening victory over Wyoming. He is well on his way to topping the 1,005 rushing yards he posted over ten games as a sophomore with the Fighting Illini in 2021.
Brown recently headlined the 2022 Jon Cornish Trophy watch list, an award presented annually to the top Canadian player in NCAA football. Past winners include B.C. Lions’ quarterback Nathan Rourke (2017 and 2018, Ohio), Carolina Panthers’ running back Chuba Hubbard (2019, Oklahoma State), Houston Texans receiver John Metchie III (2020 and 2021, Alabama).
The Doak Walker Award has been presented to the top running back in the NCAA since 1990 with past winners including Ricky Williams, LaDainian Tomlinson, and Derrick Henry. While it will remain a season-end award, the decision was made in 2022 to add a weekly component to recognize top running backs throughout the college football regular season.
Wisonsin’s Braelon Allen and BYU’s Chris Brooks also received consideration for the award this past week.