Khalil Herbert moving up Big 12 rushing chart

Kansas running back Khalil Herbert (10) fields a kickoff during warmups on Saturday, Sept. 16, 2017 at Peden Stadium in Athens, Ohio.

Kansas running back Khalil Herbert (10) fields a kickoff during warmups on Saturday, Sept. 16, 2017 at Peden Stadium in Athens, Ohio. by Nick Krug

When Kansas sophomore running back Khalil Herbert takes the field Saturday for the 11 a.m. kickoff vs. Texas Tech, he will have had two weeks to rest from the hits he took during a 36-carry, 291-yard, two-touchdown day against West Virginia in Memorial Stadium.

Even though Herbert carried the ball just once the first week of the season and twice the week after that, he remarkably ranks second in the Big 12 with 109.5 rushing yards per game. Herbert rushed for 137 yards and two touchdowns on 19 carries in the loss at Ohio, a great day and not even half as productive as his monster game of two weeks ago.

“His problem early in the year was he was kind of down there on the depth chart and he just didn’t practice very well," offensive coordinator Doug Meacham said. "He just seemed timid and unsure. He just didn’t give you a lot of confidence to put him in there, based on what you saw in practice. We're making decisions based on practice. I hadn’t seen him in a game, but I had seen him in practice a lot and he just didn’t look very good. But there are those guys who are gamer-type guys. Apparently, he’s a gamer. But he has practiced a lot better, I think because he has more confidence now.”

Herbert has the look of a back who could lead the conference in rushing and earn first-team All-Big 12 honors.

A look at how Herbert stacks up against the rest of the Big 12's top rushers:

Name (school) Class G Att Yds Avg
TD Lg Avg/G
1 - Justin Crawford (WVU)
Sr. 4 61 451 7.4 6 42 112.8
2 - Khalil Herbert (KU)
So. 4 58 438 7.6 4 67 109.5
3 - Darius Anderson (TCU)
So. 4 68 422 6.2 6 42 105.5
4 - Justice Hill (OSU)
So.
5
92 516 5.6 4 32 103.2
5 - David Montgomery (ISU)
So. 4 65 355 5.5 4 36 88.8
6 - Jesse Ertz (KSU)
Sr. 4 56 332 5.9 3 35 83.0
7 - Abdul Adams (OU)
So. 4 32 330 10.3 1 99 82.5
8 - Trey Sermon (OU)
Fr. 4
43 283 6.6 3 60 70.8
9 - Kennedy McKoy (WVU)
So. 3 31 204 6.6 3 28 68.0
10 - John Lovett (BU)
Fr. 5 61 321 5.3 3 74 64.2
Source: Big12sports.com