Most programs would take one elite running back and would certainly love to have two. Minnesota offensive coordinator Kirk Ciarrocca says the Golden Gophers have three elite backs, and obviously, he couldn’t be more pleased with that depth.

“I love it. All three are really good players,” Ciarrocca said according to 247Sports. “I just think it keeps us from overworking one of them, which is something that when you have a special back, you have to guard against that at times.

“But when you get in a ball game, and it calls for 35 carries, and that one back gets 35 carries. One of the things I’ve learned throughout the course of my career is that when you run a back that much, he’s not quite the same player the next week usually. I just love the fact that we have three guys that are elite players.”

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Minnesota has dominated in the running game, posting more than 6.4 yards per carry with more than 100 attempts the last two weeks. The Golden Gophers are averaging more than 46 carries per week, which is only possible because they have three backs they trust.

Senior Rodney Smith is leading the way with 675 rushing yards and four touchdowns, but senior Shannon Brooks is first on the team with a 6.3 yards per carry average. Sophomore Mohamed Ibrahim leads the team with five rushing touchdowns and has also chipped in 208 yards on the ground.