With questions lingering about the health of Texas’ top two running backs, additional practice reps are going to freshmen Chris Warren and Kirk Johnson.
“Those guys have gotten a lot of reps this week in practice,” play-caller Jay Norvell said on Thursday. “They’re gonna have to be prepared to play a lot.”
Earlier in the day, the team’s leading rusher, D’Onta Foreman, underwent surgery on his right pinkie finger from an injury he sustained last week at West Virginia. His availability is in question for a Thanksgiving game against Texas Tech. Additionally, starter Johnathan Gray is bothered by a foot injury that sidelined him for most of the second half at West Virginia.
“If those guys aren’t able to play, Chris is gonna have to play, and so is Kirk Johnson,” Norvell said.
Foreman leads the team with 681 yards and 7.2 yards per carry. He’s scored five touchdowns, and has runs of 81, 93 and 65 yards. Gray has totaled 489 yards, averaging 4 yards per carry.
Warren ripped off a 22-yard run at WVU. On the season, the former four-star recruit from Rockwall has 88 yards on 18 attempts. Johnson has carried five times for 12 yards.
Due to depth concerns, Norvell said sophomore receiver Roderick Bernard is getting work at running back.
“He’s got a lot of speed and quickness and does a lot of good things back there,” Norvell said.