CHARLESTON, W.Va. -- When two-time Kennedy Award winner Ryan Switzer left George Washington earlier this year, bound for the football program at North Carolina, most folks thought it would be a long time before another Patriots running back approached his numbers.
That's not turning out to be entirely true.
After four games, senior transfer Draven Riffe has just about matched Switzer stride for stride, helping GW jet to a 4-0 record.
Riffe, who played at Scott as a sophomore and attended Van but did not compete in football last year, has run for 788 yards and a dozen touchdowns in his first season at GW. He turned in his third 200-yard effort Friday in a 69-9 win against Riverside, ending up with 205 yards and three scores on just 13 carries.
That lifted his per-game average to 197 yards, a shade behind Switzer's marks of 199.7 as a junior (when he ran for 2,796 yards in 14 games) and 198.3 as a senior (with a season total of 2,379 yards in 12 games).
Riffe sounded almost surprised to hear how close he is to Switzer's production.
"He's a great runner,'' Riffe said, "and I don't like to compare myself to anyone, but we have very different running styles. He was a great player, but that's good . . . it's an honor just to be compared to a player like him.''
If Riffe continues to shadow Switzer's stats, and GW keeps winning, it's likely that he, too, will receive consideration for the Kennedy Award.
Riffe said he gained some knowledge of GW's ground game by reviewing game video of Switzer from 2011-12.