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#CFBTop25: No. 1, Leonard Fournette, RB, LSU

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  • By NFL.com
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Last year, Alabama's Derrick Henry became the first running back to win the Heisman Trophy since Mark Ingram (also of Alabama) won the award in 2009. Could LSU's Leonard Fournette become the second consecutive RB to take home college football's most prestigious piece of hardware?

CFB 24/7 is marking the days to the start of the 2016 season by counting down the top 25 players in college football.

Fournette was the Heisman favorite in the first half of the 2015 season. But LSU ran into eventual national champion Alabama on Nov. 7. After reeling off seven consecutive 100-yard rushing games (including three in which he went for more than 200 yards), Fournette hit a wall against 'Bama, gaining just 31 yards on 19 carries. While Alabama's defense grounded Fournette, Henry was dominant in a 30-16 win and that effort built momentum toward his Heisman win. Once again, Fournette's Heisman hopes this season likely will come down to how he performs against Alabama.

Pulling back the curtain on the vote


Fournette earned two first-place votes and four more second-place votes from CFB 24/7 experts to earn the top spot in the #CFBTop25 countdown. Fournette is one of five running backs in the rankings.

What some of our analysts are saying about Fournette


"Fournette has a rare blend of size, speed and power. He is a special, special talent." -- Daniel Jeremiah

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"Fournette is just the type of bruising, big-play back that Derrick Henry was last year when he won the Heisman. Fournette should be considered a favorite to follow in Henry's footsteps." -- Lance Zierlein

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"Punishing runner with outstanding balance, body control and vision. Fournette could top the 2,000-yard mark as the Tigers' workhorse runner." -- Bucky Brooks

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"I've said for the last two seasons that the 'Running Back Renaissance' was coming ... and, it's here. Leonard Fournette is the best pure runner that I've seen in CFB since Adrian Peterson." -- Charles Davis

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"Fournette's combination of power and speed is unrivaled at his position. What makes him all the more special is that defenses load the box and dare LSU to pass, and Fournette goes through them like a freight train anyway." -- Chase Goodbread

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"A 'five-tool back' -- Fournette has speed, power, agility, can catch the ball and block." -- Chad Reuter

Where do fans rank Fournette?


We asked Twitter users who they considered the best player in college football. Fournette earned the most votes among fans. This is no surprise, given the plethora of thrilling highlights he was able to produce last season. With Fournette voted No. 1, Clemson QB Deshaun Watson voted No. 2 and Stanford's Christian McCaffrey at No. 4, fans and our experts agreed on three of the top four spots in the #CFBTop25 countdown for 2016.

Follow College Football 24/7 on Twitter @NFL_CFB.

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