Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Best of the best

So many of the names are familiar to even the casual football fans - legends Jim Brown, Gale Sayers, Lawrence Taylor, Jerry Rice, Herschel Walker, Red Grange and Sammy Baugh are among 28 players highlighted in the soon to be released "The College Football Book" being published by Sports Illustrated.

A former Yale star is also among the 28 players featured. It is not Larry Kelley or Clint Frank, the Elis' back-to-back Heisman Trophy winners in 1937 and 1938 or first-round pro draft picks Fritz Barzilauskas or Calvin Hill, quarterback supreme Brian Dowling or Super Bowl winning players Chuck Mercein, Gary Fencik and Ken Hill.

Give up? It is Pudge Heffelfinger, a guard on Yale's 1888 and 1891 national championship teams.

The list came with the intriguing restriction that only one player per school could be named as a result you will not see the names of USC running backs Marcus Allen, O.J. Simpson or Charles White as guard Ron Yary is the Trojans' lone representative. Jack Ham is the linebacker from Penn State, dubbed "Linebacker U" and Heisman Trophy winning running back Ernie Davis did not make it because fellow Syracuse RB Jim Brown was an obvious pick.

Here's the complete list:

- Knute Rockne, Notre Dame, 1918-30
- Paul (Bear) Bryant, Alabama, 1958-82

- Charles Woodson: Defensive Back/Receiver, Michigan, 1995-97
- Jack Ham: Linebacker, Penn State, 1968-70
- Kenny Easley: Defensive Back, UCLA, 1977-80
- Bubba Smith: Defensive End, Michigan State, 1964-66
- Lee Roy Selmon: Defensive Tackle, Oklahoma, 1972-75
- Bronko Nagurski: Tackle/Back, Minnesota, 1927-29
- Hugh Green: Defensive End, Pittsburgh, 1977-80
- Tommy Nobis: Linebacker, Texas, 1963-65
- Deion Sanders: Defensive Back, Florida State, 1985-88
- Lawrence Taylor: Linebacker, North Carolina, 1977-80
- Jim Thorpe: Back, Carlisle, 1907-08, '11-12

- Glenn Davis: Back, Army, 1943-46
- Chuck Bednarik: Center/Linebacker, Penn, 1945-48
- Leon Hart: End, Notre Dame, 1946-49
- Orlando Pace: Tackle, Ohio State, 1994-96
- Jerry Rice: End, Mississippi Valley State, 1981-84
- Red Grange: Back, Illinois, 1923-25
- Jim Brown: Back, Syracuse, 1954-56
- Herschel Walker: Back, Georgia, 1980-82
- John Hannah: Guard/Tackle, Alabama, 1970-72
- Ron Yary: Tackle, USC, 1965-67
- Pudge Heffelfinger: Guard, Yale 1888-91

- Johnny Rodgers: Returns/Receivers, Nebraska, 1970-72
- Gale Sayers: Returns/Back, Kansas, 1962-64
- Doak Walker: Kicker/Back, SMU, 1945, '47-49
- Sammy Baugh: Punter/Back TCU, 1934-36


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