Leonard Fournette vs. Herschel Walker vs. Bo Jackson?!

LSU’s 2014 super recruit Leonard Fournette has been favorably compared to several of the SEC’s all-time great running backs.  How can Fournette possibly be compared to the likes of Bo Jackson or Herschel Walker when he hasn’t even played a down of SEC-ball?  Is it even fair?  Not really.  Can he even be compared with Georgia’s current stud running back Todd Gurley or last year’s leading SEC rusher, Auburn’s Tre Mason?  In football terms of course not because we don’t know enough yet.  If we consider 1,000 rushing yards in a season a success, in the SEC, then Fournette more than likely has the ability to do that and then some…as Arkansas’s freshman back Alex Collins’ had 1,026 yards last year.  Collins is a quite a talent in his own right and a heck of an athlete.   

That said can Fournette come close to being in the mold of Jackson or Walker?  Again, we don’t know yet BUT from a size, weight, speed and power aspect (see our Player Athletic Index for more on this) Fournette compares favorably to both of them.  Consider that Fournette is listed at 6’01 and 225-230lbs which would make him roughly the same height and actually a bit heavier than either Jackson or Walker coming out of high school, assuming their high school data in old media guides is fairly accurate.  Fournette is quite a bit heavier than either Mason or Gurley coming out of high school.  So Fournette’s size compares favorably or better with all the other backs.  And his YouTube highlights?  They’re spectacular! 

What about 40-yard dash speed?  Well, does anyone know Bo Jackson’s or Herschel Walker’s high school 40 time?  I don’t.  Send it to me please, if you do!  Given that we don’t really know we should look at far more reliable speed numbers – track data.  And there too Fournette, despite his size, compares well.  He ran a well documented and referenced 10.68 fully-automatic 100 meters.  I’m more impressed by Fournette’s 6.55 in the 55 meters at 225+, that means he must run a pretty fast 40!  Bo ran a 10.44 equivalent (probably closer to 10.5-10.6) in high school at 215-220lbs, and Herschel ran in the 10.5 range as well.  

Not to be overlooked, Todd Gurley was a spectacular hurdler in high school running a 13.66 in the 110 highs.  RGIII ran a 13.55 best in the 110 high hurdles to give perspective to Gurley’s feat.  And Gurley was over 200lbs in high school.  Additionally, Gurley ran 10.70 in the 100 meters which indicates home-run type speed just like Jackson, Walker and Fournette.  Lastly, while Tre Mason might not have had the 100 meter speed or size of any of those guys, he did have a solid basketball background, ran a leg on a 400 relay team with a best of 42.42, and long jump 21’08 and high jumped 6’02. 

So back to the question is Leonard Fournette the next great SEC running back?  Check out TrackingFootball’s Save & Compare chart below to get a better look at how each of these players stacks up physically and athletically and you decide. 

 

Your Compared Players

Click to sort by a field below Leonard
Fournette
Todd
Gurley
Tre
Mason
Bo
Jackson
Herschel
Walker
POSITION RB RB RB RB RB
NFL TEAM (DRAFTED BY) N/A N/A N/A Raiders Cowboys
COLLEGE Louisiana State Georgia Auburn Auburn Georgia
HIGH SCHOOL St. Augustine Tarboro Park Vista McAdory Johnson County
CLASS YEAR 2014 2012 2011 1982 1980
DRAFT ROUND N/A N/A 3 7 5
HEIGHT 6′ 1″ 6′ 1″ 5′ 09″ 6′ 1″ 6′ 1″
ROSTER WEIGHT 230 232 207 227 225
HS WEIGHT 225 205 190 215 215
PAI
5.0
5.0
3.2
5.0
5.0
STAR N/A N/A
HS SPORTS Track Track Basketball Track Basketball Track Baseball Track Basketball
40 (HS) N/A N/A 4.5 N/A N/A
40 (NFL) N/A N/A 4.50 4.12? N/A
SPRINTS
55M 6.55 6.66 N/A N/A N/A
60M N/A 7.16 N/A N/A N/A
100M 10.68 10.70 11.90 10.44h 10.50h
100Y N/A N/A N/A 9.54 9.6
200M 21.57 N/A N/A N/A N/A
220Y N/A N/A N/A N/A 21.5
RELAYS
400R 41.37 42.92 42.42 N/A N/A
800R 1:26.83 N/A N/A N/A N/A
1600R 3:30.14 N/A N/A N/A N/A
MILE RELAY N/A N/A N/A N/A 3:24.0
HURDLES
55HH N/A N/A N/A 7.29 N/A
60HH N/A 8.54 N/A N/A N/A
110HH N/A 13.66 N/A 13.83 N/A
120YHH N/A N/A N/A 13.8 N/A
300IH N/A 40.89 N/A N/A N/A
MIDDLE DISTANCE & DECATHLON
DECATHLON N/A N/A N/A 8340 N/A
JUMPING EVENTS
HIGH JUMP N/A N/A 6′ 02″ 6′ 09″ N/A
LONG JUMP N/A N/A 21′ 08″ 24′ 07″ N/A
TRIPLE JUMP N/A N/A N/A 48′ 08″ N/A
POLE VAULT N/A N/A N/A 13′ 00″ N/A
THROWING EVENTS
SHOT PUT N/A N/A N/A 50′ 00″ 53′ 03″
DISCUS N/A N/A N/A 149′ 00″ N/A