Athlon Sports Names Barry Sanders 2nd Best CFB Player in Last Half Century

first_imgAs a part of the celebration of its 50th anniversary, Athlon Sports compiled a panel of college football experts to rank the 50 greatest college football players during that span. Predictably, Oklahoma State’s lone Heisman winner was near the top.The dazzlingly elusive Sanders had arguably the greatest individual season in college football history, rushing for 2,850 yards on 7.6 yards per carry and 42 touchdowns (including the bowl game) in his Heisman campaign of 1988. He scored 55 total touchdowns in his three-year career despite having only one season as the Cowboys’ featured back. [Athlon Sports]AdChoices广告Sanders claim to the greatest individual season is actually pretty hard to argue. In 1988, Sanders set 38 new NCAA records on his way to claiming the school’s only Heisman trophy. The majority of those records are still in tact.One of those records, the single-season mark for all-purpose yards, fell to Christian McCaffrey’s 2015 season. McCaffrey compiled 3,864 yards in 14 games for an average of 276 per game. Sanders’ record was 3,250 yards in 11 games (bowl games prior to 2002 are not counted by the NCAA). That included an unheard of 295.5 yards per game. If we include his Holiday Bowl performance, Sanders actually had  3,526 in twelve games, a 293.8 average.No running back has ever been — or likely ever will be — as dominant as Sanders was that season. Ever.Had it not been for another Hall-of-Fame running back in Thurman Thomas ahead of him, who knows what Sanders could have accomplished during his first two seasons.Georgia’s Herschel Walker gets the No. 1 nod on this list, likely due to his teams’ overall success and the Bulldogs’ National Championship in 1980. Hard to argue with Walker as an all-time great, but I have a hard time putting anyone ahead of Barry if we’re talking individual accomplishments. While you’re here, we’d like you to consider subscribing to Pistols Firing and becoming a PFB+ member. It’s a big ask from us to you, but it also comes with a load of benefits like ad-free browsing (ads stink!), access to our premium room in The Chamber and monthly giveaways.The other thing it does is help stabilize our business into the future. As it turns out, sending folks on the road to cover games and provide 24/7 Pokes coverage like the excellent article you just read costs money. Because of our subscribers, we’ve been able to improve our work and provide the best OSU news and community anywhere online. Help us keep that up.last_img