Benny Snell Named to All-SEC First Team

(Photo by Daniel Shirey/Getty Images)
(Photo by Daniel Shirey/Getty Images) /

Kentucky running back Benny Snell Jr. was named to the AP All-SEC first-team.

Benny Snell Jr. had a phenomenal sophomore season at Kentucky. He ran for 1318 yards, only 2 yards behind the SEC’s leading rusher Kerryon Johnson of Auburn. Snell led the SEC with 18 rushing touchdowns.

Snell did not have the greatest start to the season. In the opening game against Southern Mississippi Snell logged only 67 yards on 20 carries and did not score. Benny had productive, but not spectacular showings in the four games that followed.

Against Missouri Benny got his groove back, tearing through the Tigers’ defense for 117 yards on 20 carries. Snell ripped off a career-long run of 71 yards in that game for one of his two touchdowns. In the following game against Mississippi State nothing went right for Snell or the Wildcats. Snell was held to a season-low in both attempts (7) and yards (18).

Snell kicked it into another gear over the Wildcats’ final five games. He racked up 777 yards with an average of 6.3 yards per rush. The Kentucky running back accounted for 12 touchdowns during that stretch and ran for over 175 yards in 3 of the 5 games.

Snell’s performance this year is even more impressive when you consider the make-shift offensive line he was running behind. The Kentucky offensive line was banged up all season. They also lost last year’s All-SEC second team center Jon Toth to the NFL.

Snell’s 18 touchdowns this season and 31 total are both UK records. Benny’s 1318 yards rushing are third all-time at Kentucky behind only Artose Pinner (1,414 yards) and Moe Williams (1,600). With a solid showing in the Music City Bowl against Northwestern, Snell could pass Boom Williams for No. 7 all-time in rushing at Kentucky.