LSU’s well-stock running back position in 2023 is taking on a different makeup next season.
The Tigers have already had three players at that position enter the NCAA transfer portal and a fourth, senior Noah Cain, decided on Monday to enter the 2024 NFL Draft.
“My parents taught me to never quit, no matter what I may be faced with along my path,” Cain wrote on social media X (formerly Twitter). “I am resilient, I possess an impeccable work ethic and I am a team player. The best is yet to come.”
Cain, a Baton Rouge native whose family was driven to Texas by Hurricane Katrina, spent three years at Penn State where he graduated and the last two seasons at LSU.
The 5-foot-11, 210-pound Cain becomes the sixth member of the ’23 team to enter the NFL Draft. He follows wide receivers Malik Nabers and Brian Thomas Jr., center Charles Turner III, safety Andre Sam and defensive tackle Jordan Jefferson.
LSU’s still waiting on the status of running back Josh Williams. He could return and join returners Kaleb Jackson and Trey Holly in the backfield, and incoming freshman Caden Durham of Duncanville, Texas.
The Tigers lost their top rushing running back from last season to the transfer portal in Logan Diggs, along with Tre Bradford (North Texas signee) and Armoni Goodwin (UAB signee), and senior John Emery Jr. completed his eligibility after suffering an ACL tear this season.
Cain ranked fourth on the team this past season with 37 carries for 181 yards and three touchdowns in 13 games. He was also a valuable member of special teams and considered an able pass catcher and protector of Heisman Trophy-winning quarterback Jayden Daniels against the blitz.
His top game for the Tigers in ’23 came in a 62-0 victory over Army with seven attempts for 40 yards and a TD.
Cain appeared in all 14 of his team’s games in ’22, rushing 76 times for 409 yards and 10 TDs – a statistic that led all LSU running backs. His yardage total ranked fourth on the team.
Cain, who began his high school career at Guyer in Denton, finished his prep career at IMG Academy and then signed with Penn State where he sandwiched a redshirt year in ’20 around two productive seasons in ’19 and ’21.
Cain started in eight of 24 games for the Nittany Lions, rushing 190 times for 793 yards (4.2 yards per carry) and 12 touchdowns. He also had 26 receptions for 166 yards.
He concluded his 51-game collegiate career with 306 carries for 1,396 yards and 25 TDs, and 36 catches for 248 yards and another score.