Kenneth Walker III's Heisman Like Performance

Mobile 11
Stephen Hatala

The Michigan Wolverines traveled to East Lansing to face their arch nemesis Michigan State Spartans. Michigan came into the game ranked #6 with a 7-0 record, while the Spartans were ranked #8 also holding a 7-0 record. Michigan dominates the all-time series lead with a 71-38-5 lead. However, on Saturday, Kenneth Walker III and Michigan State had other plans. 

Michigan came out swinging and dominated the first quarter on both sides of the football as they shut the Spartans out 10-0. Unfortunately for Michigan, Michigan State running-back Kenneth Walker III had different plans.

On Saturday, Walker didn’t disappoint as he was in straight beast mode. Walker accounted for all five Michigan State touchdowns. Each touchdown couldn’t have come at a better time, as he absolutely gashed the Michigan defense and got what he wanted whenever he wanted.  His first touchdown showed unbelievable patience, effort and vision.

Fortunately, it occurred at the perfect time as his team was down 10-0 and any more of a deficit may have ended an undefeated season. He then scored on the very next possession from eight yards out. His next two touchdowns were from one, and 58 yards. With Michigan State down 33-30, Walker’s last touchdown couldn’t have come at a more opportune time.  With 5:13 left in the game, Walker scampered for 23 yards and his fifth and final touchdown that eventually sealed the game.

He ended the game with 197 yards off only 23 carries. After Saturday’s performance, Walker has to be considered the Heisman favorite.

 Walker showcases a good balance of speed and power. But where he really separates himself is his ability to stick his foot in the ground, get upfield, and make defenders miss while he’s at full speed. Walker is having a freakish season thus far--he’s averaging almost seven yards per carry which ranks ninth in the country. Additionally, he’s second in rushing yards on the year (1147), while having 26 less carries than the nations’ rushing yards leader. After his five touchdown performance, he now ranks third in the country with 14 rushing touchdowns. Ridiculous. 

Walker warrants a ton of attention for the Michigan State offense as he consistently faces stacked boxes and multiple bodies in his vicinity. After such a masterful performance against a solid Michigan defense and consistent big numbers against solid competition, Walker has to be considered a Heisman favorite at this point. Team success remains a factor when Heisman time comes around. Michigan State is 8-0, and ranked fifth in the country according to the latest AP poll. With games against Ohio State and Penn State left, Walker has a chance to catch plenty of steam and take home the Heisman come December. 

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