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Steve Spurrier envisions early exit for RB Mike Davis

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Wade Payne/Associated Press
South Carolina running back Mike Davis enters the 2014 season as one of the SEC's top weapons.

If you thought South Carolina coach Steve Spurrier was just bloviating when he said he would no longer try to sway any underclassmen to stay in college, he's backing up the talk.

At least with more talk, anyway.

Take a look at college football's top underclassmen players to watch in the 2014 season.

"Mike Davis, if he has a big year, he's going to go pro," Spurrier said of his star running back, according to espn.com. "And we're going to tell him to go pro, because he should. The lifespan of a running back is only a certain amount of years."

Davis rushed for 1,183 yards last year and is one of the SEC's elite ball carriers.

Spurrier said at SEC Media Days he would not only support underclassmen who consider leaving early, but encourage them, as well. Among other factors for his stance, Spurrier reasoned that a player considering a pro career is an indication he is "tired of school." In the case of former player Marcus Lattimore, however, Spurrier's logic was strictly medical. Lattimore had two severe knee injuries that threatened his professional future and compelled him to forego his senior season.

It's easy enough to cite the circumstances of a former player, but publicly applying the same logic to a current star like Davis, who has two more seasons of college eligibility, speaks to Spurrier's conviction on the matter.

If healthy, Davis should battle Georgia's Todd Gurley and Alabama's T.J. Yeldon to be the SEC's top rusher this fall. Arkansas' Alex Collins could challenge for the distinction, as well.

Follow Chase Goodbread on Twitter @ChaseGoodbread.

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