SHREVEPORT (AP) — A couple of All-American running backs figure to play prominent roles in deciding whether Boston College or Arizona bounce back from disappointing regular-season finales.
Andre Williams and the Eagles go for their first bowl victory in six years, while Ka'Deem Carey and the Wildcats seek a second consecutive eight-win season at the AdvoCare V100 Bowl in Shreveport, La. on New Year's Eve.
According to Boston College coach Steve Addazio, Williams will be "ready to roll" after suffering an undisclosed injury early in the third quarter of a 34-31 loss at Syracuse on Nov. 30.
Williams, who battled a shoulder problem earlier in the season, was named a Heisman Trophy finalist but didn't help his chances by ending up with 29 yards and a touchdown against the Orange. The senior had piled up 897 yards – including a 339-yard effort against North Carolina State on Nov. 16 -- over his previous three contests for the Eagles (7-5).
"The only opportunity we really missed is being able to get that eighth win against Syracuse," Williams said. "I really wasn't worried about Heisman polls."
With the 16th 2,000-yard season in NCAA history, Williams ranks ninth all-time for single-season yardage with a nation-best 2,102 in 2013. He needs 84 yards against Arizona (7-5) to move past Iowa State's Troy Davis for fourth on that list.
Williams has averaged 6.4 yards per carry and run for 17 touchdowns on the way to winning the prestigious Doak Walker Award as the country's top running back.
Arizona's Carey, a Walker Award finalist, ranks second nationally behind Williams (175.2) with an average of 156.0 rushing yards per game, and this will mark the first time in the modern era (since 1980 when AP selected two first-team running backs) the AP's All-American running backs face off in a bowl.