Over the next two weeks, we'll be featuring 10 Big 12 players who are on the spot this spring. Maybe they are coming back from injury. Maybe they have much to prove after a disappointing 2015 season. Maybe they are embroiled in a key position battle. Whatever the case, this spring is big for them.
Today's player on the spot: Texas Tech running back Justin Stockton
The numbers are pretty staggering: 3,308 yards from scrimmage, 6.72 yards per touch from scrimmage, 2,595 rushing yards, 71 receptions for 713 yards and 20 touchdowns.
It's safe to say DeAndre Washington's production during the past two seasons at Texas Tech will be hard to duplicate.
Justin Stockton won't be asked to shoulder the entire burden on his own but the junior is first in line to pick up the opportunities that Washington leaves behind. A big-play threat with terrific speed, Stockton has shown flashes of his game-changing ability -- scoring touchdowns on 8.3 percent of his carries -- during his first two seasons in Lubbock. Oklahoma's Joe Mixon (28) is the only running back with fewer than 200 total attempts that has recorded more than Stockton's 22 carries of 10 yards or more during the past two seasons, according to ESPN Stats & Information. Frankly, if Washington wasn't such a stellar player and All-Big 12 honoree, Stockton probably would have seen more time on the field during his first couple of seasons.
Quinton White, Demarcus Felton and Corey Dauphine are among the running backs who could help replace Washington's production but Stockton seems to have distanced himself from the pack, with coach Kliff Kingsbury telling the Lubbock Journal-World that Stockton is "going to be the guy" last week.
The remaining question, and the reason Stockton finds himself on the spot, is how the 5-foot-10, 185 pound running back can handle the increased carries and workload on his body. He had 48 carries for 396 yards and four touchdowns as a freshman followed by 61 carries for 367 yards and five touchdowns in 2015. Stockton's eight carries in his debut against UTEP and his 11 touches against Sam Houston State last year are career highs. By comparison, Washington averaged 20.9 touches including 16.8 carries during the past two seasons as the Red Raiders' primary ball carrier.
Stockton has all the elements to become a key playmaker in the Red Raiders' offense and become a name to know in the Big 12. Yet how well Stockton handles the increased workload could ultimately define how much Kingsbury's team misses Washington in 2016.