Brian Kelly has stated multpile times that the best players will play for the Fighting Irish, whether they're freshman or fifth year seniors. Sophomore running back Cierre Wood must have heard those comments.
A year ago Wood was a freshman trying to get used to life in South Bend, coming from Oxnard, California. Wood didn't rack up any carries his freshman year but did make a splash in this years spring game as he rushed for 111 yards and 2 touchdowns on 10 carries.
After an impressive start to fall practice you can now pencil in Wood as the number two running back on Brian Kelly's depth chart.
Wood is also said to be making a strong push for the number one spot on the depth chart which is currently held by senior Armando Allen. Wood passed Chicago product Robert Hughes in getting the number two spot.
Wood showed throughout his high school career a great ability to accelerate and change direction while concerns were left with his ability to be a power runner. He ranked as a 4-star recruit and the 6th best running back in the nation during his 2008 senior season at Santa Clara High School (scout.com).
Going forward its easy to assume that Robert Hughes takes the biggest hit from this. Perhaps Hughes is brought in for short yardage situations but any chance of him being a go-to back appear to have passed.
It is safe to say that Wood fits into Kelly's scheme a lot better than the grinding running style of Hughes does. As the season goes on I fully expect us to see the bulk of the workload end up in Wood's hands with the more game experience he gets.