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Wisconsin football: Nakia Watson named to Doak Walker Award watch list

If you are a running back at Wisconsin you’re going to get some respect regardless of how many career carries you have.

COLLEGE FOOTBALL: SEP 07 Central Michigan at Wisconsin Photo by Dan Sanger/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

The Wisconsin Badgers have a long and storied history of producing running backs that set records and win awards. The Doak Walker Award is annually given to the best running back in the country and this year, presumed Wisconsin starting running back, Nakia Watson made the watch list.

In the last eight seasons, a Wisconsin running back has won this award four times. Jonathan Taylor did it twice, Melvin Gordon did it once as did Montee Ball. In fact, the Badgers have won the Doak Walker the most times (five, with Ron Dayne in 1999 completing the group) of any school in the country since it was first awarded in 1990.

After a redshirt season in 2018, the Austin, Texas native played in all 14 games in 2019 and recorded 74 carries for 331 yards and two touchdowns while backing up Taylor. He is one of the front-runners to take over the starting role in 2020, although running backs coach John Settle has mentioned that he may be going to a “committee” approach to the backfield this year.

This is an impressive honor for Watson considering he doesn’t have much experience under his belt so far in the B1G. But, being a running back for Wisconsin brings a level of respect that few other programs can match. Taylor will definitely have his eyes on Watson this season.