Oregon Ducks running back Byron Marshall, a sophomore from Valley Christian High School (San Jose, California), enters his second season in the Oregon program.

Before joining the Ducks, Marshall lettered all four years of varsity football on his way to becoming an Army All-American. As a sophomore he rushed for 1,035 yards and 17 touchdowns, while also recording 11 receptions for 331 yards and four touchdowns. His standout season earned him Cal-Hi Sports State Sophomore of the Year and first-team Central Coast choice and West Coast Athletic League pick. As a junior he rushed 145 times for 1,360 yards (9.3 YPC) as well as recording 10 receptions for 115 yards (11.5 YPC) while being selected to the all-Central Coast first-team. Marhsall battled injuries as a senior, missing three games but still amassing 914 rushing yards and nine touchdowns.

Marshall also excelled as a track star at the prep level. The speedster placed third place at the National Indoor Championships in the 60 meters and ran a time of 10.67 seconds in the 100 meters. With the Ducks he’s focusing on football, unlike many of his teammates who do track as well.

In 2012, Marshall appeared in 11 games rushing 87 times for 447 yards (5.1 YPC) and four touchdowns and bypassing a redshirt. He was the Ducks’ fourth-leading rusher behind Kenjon Barner, Marcus Mariota and De’Anthony Thomas. What’s incredible is Marshall got the bulk of his yardage late in games with second-string linemen and playing in obvious running situations, yet he still averaged over five yards per carry. That’s amazing.

Marshall started in the 2013 Oregon Spring, rushing the ball six times for 60 yards (10.0 YPC) with a long of 26 yards and one touchdown.

Going into the 2013 season, Marshall is in a heated battle for the starting running back job against Thomas and true freshman Thomas Tyner. I predicted that Marshall would be the starter in my early August depth chart, and believe he will be the team’s leading rusher by season’s end.