ORLANDO, Fla.—Keith Marshall didn’t make much noise in the Southeastern Conference championship game, but the Georgia tailback will go up against a Nebraska team in Tuesday’s Capital One Bowl that was burned by big plays on the perimeter in its last game, a 70-31 thrashing by Wisconsin in the Big Ten championship.
That’s right up Marshall’s alley. He has four runs of 50 or more yards during his freshman season, including touchdown runs of 75, 72, 62 and 52 yards.
“I try to get outside,” Marshall said. “I can break a big run if I get that chance.”
Marshall was limited to two carries for three yards against Alabama, his lowest output of the year.
Offensive coordinator Mike Bobo said this afternoon that “Keith’s had a great week of practice, really more than a week, a great month of practice.”
Marshall got first-team reps ahead of fellow freshman Todd Gurley during the portion of practice open to the media on Saturday.
“We’ve got a big plan for Keith in this game and expect him to make plays and play well in this game,” Bobo said. “He’s running good. I think the little bit of time off has helped him. He’s had some knee soreness the whole season and I think the rest has helped him. He’ll be fresh and ready to go on Tuesday.”
Marshall said he was a “little beat up” in the title game, but didn’t want to specify that injury.
“There were some other circumstances going on in that game, but yeah, I definitely wanted to show that I could play,” Marshall said of bowl practices.
He was listed with a shoulder contusion the week before the SEC title game.
Gurley has rushed for 1,260 yards and 16 touchdowns, the third most by a freshman in program history. Marshall is No. 8 on that list with 723 yards and eight touchdowns.
“I wanted to come in, contribute and play a lot early,” Marshall said. “I think I had a good year. Going forward I want to just keep getting better. There’s a lot of things I can work on in my game. I want to focus on that this offseason.”
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