Michigan State vs Oregon: 5 players to watch

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Sep 5, 2015; Eugene, OR, USA; Oregon Ducks running back Kani Benoit (29) runs past Eastern Washington Eagles defensive lineman Marcus Saugen (93) at Autzen Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Scott Olmos-USA TODAY Sports

Only getting 23 chances to prove his worth as a freshman, now-sophomore running back Kani Benoit is looking to make a name for himself with the Ducks just as many playmakers before him have.

Related: MSU Football: Next man up at every position

Benoit only finished with 98 yards in 2014 and has already racked up 83 yards and a touchdown on 11 carries against Eastern Washington.

With the dynamic Thomas Tyner out for the season after a shoulder injury, players have had to step up in his absence and Benoit has done just that. On top of the 83 yards rushing, he added a 19-yard reception to push him over 100 all-purpose yards on the day.

The obvious choice for Oregon running back to keep an eye on would easily be Royce Freeman, but the sophomore is almost a given and I wanted to bring to life another name who MSU fans may not have heard before.

Freeman had 180 rushing yards in week one and he finished with just under 90 on 13 carries against the Spartans in 2014. Michigan State has one of the top run defenses in the country, ranking No. 1 in 2014, but containing two, maybe three, solid running backs and a dual-threat QB won’t be a simple task.

Next: 2. Montae Nicholson