Former South Carolina running back Marcus Lattimore is one of the few people qualified to give an opinion on the topic of the day in college football.
On Monday, Stanford running back Christian McCaffrey announced that he would not play in the Sun Bowl. This comes after Leonard Fournette announced he would sit out LSU’s bowl game against Louisville to prepare for the NFL Draft.
Largely, McCaffrey and Fournette’s decisions were made to avoid the fate of Jaylon Smith or Lattimore. Last year, Smith was pegged as a top-5 pick heading into Notre Dame’s bowl game against Ohio State. But Smith shredded his knee in the Fiesta Bowl, fell to the second round and has yet to play this season for the Dallas Cowboys.
Lattimore similarly suffered a gruesome leg injury during his junior year, well after he had made it apparent that he was one of the most talented running backs in America. On Monday, the former South Carolina star supported the decision made by McCaffrey and Fournette.
— Marcus Lattimore (@MarcusLattimore) December 19, 2016
After the knee injury, Lattimore fell to the fourth round in the 2013 NFL Draft. He lasted just one full season before retiring in 2014. But Lattimore didn’t let the injuries derail him, as he graduated from South Carolina and will be the head coach at Heathwood High School.
Fournette and McCaffrey have both been pegged as top 50 picks in the 2017 NFL Draft. Both missed games this season due to injury.