News:Tra Carson got extensive action in the Oregon backfield Saturday in the win over Colorado, carrying 11 times for 80 yards and a score.
Analysis: Carson is interesting because he's a much bigger back than the Ducks normal posse of runners. However, he showed not only power, but very good feet and a burst that was a bit of a surprise.
News: Oregon running back LaMichael James did not practice again on Thursday and Duck quarterback Darron Thomas may have spilled the beans on James' status. "Same old thing, practicing, getting ready," Thomas said after practice on Wednesday. "Trying to push a little bit harder because we know we ain't gonna be with LaMike."
Analysis: James could certainly play without practicing and we won't get an official word on whether or not James will play from the coaching staff. But all signs point to James sitting this one out. Which means Kenjon Barner will likely carry the load at running back with De'Anthony Thomas (who will also play receiver) and Tra Carson seeing carries as well.
News: With LaMichael James out for Saturday's tilt with Arizona State, backup Kenjon Barner will get a healthy dose of touches. While De'Anthony Thomas and Tra Carson will also see more action, it will likely be Barner who is the meat and potatoes of the running game.
Analysis: Barner is only slightly below James in terms of explosiveness and big play capability. Barner has shown the ability to have huge days, too. He'll get a chance to touch the ball a decent amount, and if the Sun Devils don't respect him like they would James -- he could go off.
News: Oregon running back LaMichael James met with the media on Tuesday and the question on everyone's mind was his status for Saturday's game against Arizona State. "I don't know yet," James said. "I'll have to wait and see. ...I don't want to miss to any game."
Analysis: The consensus opinion is that James will rest this week. Considering he still has swelling in the elbow and Kenjon Barner is more than capable carrying the load -- with Tra Carson and De'Anthony Thomas in relief -- it would seem wise for James to sit this one out.
News: Oregon running back LaMichael James won't rule himself out of this weekend's game. James said his dislocated elbow is still sore and swollen, but said if the doctor's tell him it's fine to play, he'll likely play.
Analysis: James said his availability will be determined by the medical staff. It's hard to figure where this will fall as prudence would seem to dictate giving James a rest and letting Kenjon Barner, De'Anthony Thomas and Tra Carson the work. It's obvious that James wants to play, though, so we'll see how well his lobbying of the medical team works. At this point, he's likely not to play -- but he just might talk his way into it.
News: Oregon isn't tipping its hand in terms of who might replace all-American running back LaMichael James if he can't play this weekend. Kenjon Barner is the likely candidate to get most of the carries, but De'Anthony Thomas and Tra Carson are also likely to see action.
Analysis: Running backs coach Gary Campbell said that how each back does in this week's practice will determine who gets what kind of action. Look for Barner, but this could be the week that Thomas really gets a chance to touch the ball.