FOR OCT. 3, 2016
How many running backs will be taken in the first round of the 2017 NFL draft? Although the position has been deemphasized in NFL offensive playbooks in recent years, SI.com's Chris Burke believes that next year's draft class will be loaded with star runners, including LSU junior Leonard Fournette (7). Go to SI.com/nfl to see Burke's first mock draft of the season, in which he also identifies which quarterback will be taken first—Notre Dame's DeShone Kizer (14) or Clemson's Deshaun Watson—and which defensive playmaker, Michigan defensive back/linebacker Jabrill Peppers (5) or Texas A&M defensive lineman Myles Garrett, will lead the way to the podium.
Last season Penn State running back Saquon Barkley broke D.J. Dozier's 32-year-old school freshman rushing record with 1,076 yards and tied Dozier with seven touchdowns. Barkley also caught 20 passes for 161 yards. He had five 100-yard games on the ground in 2015 and finished fourth in the Big Ten in rushing despite missing time with a right-ankle injury. On Saturday, he was the only bright spot for the Nittany Lions in their 49--10 loss to Michigan, with five receptions for 77 yards. So far in '16, Barkley has rushed for 317 yards and six touchdowns. Can the sophomore from Coplay, Pa., emerge as the Big Ten's top running back? For an exclusive video of Barkley, as well as the entire Rising Stars series presented by Symetra, go to SI.com/risingstars
End of an Affair
From the SI Vault: April 6, 2004
After a half century of making memories at Augusta, Arnold Palmer, the man who made the Masters, will take one last bow
By John Garrity
To read this and other stories from the SPORTS ILLUSTRATED archives, go toSI.com/vault