Appalachian State University sophomore Marcus Cox (Dacula, Ga./Dacula) is one of 53 official preseason candidates for the 2014 Doak Walker Award, the PwC SMU Athletic Forum announced on Thursday. The Doak Walker Award is presented annually to college football’s top running back.
Cox is one of only nine underclassmen among the 53 candidates and one of just four from the Sun Belt Conference (joining Arkansas State junior Michael Gordon, Louisiana-Lafayette senior Alonzo Harris and Texas State junior Robert Lowe). Cox is also the only candidate from the six NCAA Division I FBS programs in the state of North Carolina.
Cox set Appalachian State freshman records with 1,250 rushing yards and 21 total touchdowns as a true freshman in 2013. He also tied the school’s freshman record with 15 rushing touchdowns and piled up 1,809 all-purpose yards en route to finishing second in voting for the Jerry Rice Award, given to the NCAA Division I FCS Freshman of the Year. He also earned a spot on 247Sports’ freshman all-America team and was the only FCS representative and one of just three players from non-BCS conferences on that prestigious list.
Appalachian State opens preseason practices on Aug. 1 in preparation for its FBS debut on Aug. 30 at Michigan.