You Make the Call — Running Back

Who is the best running back to ever wear a Colorado uniform? Inside, take a look at BSN's top 5, then vote for your No. 1.

Bobby Anderson
6-0, 208 pounds
1967-69
A savvy runner with a knack for making plays. After playing quarterback in 1967 and 1968, Anderson moved to tailback the third game of 1969, his senior season. He earned first team All-American as a dual-threat QB in 1968, and TB in '69.

No. 7 all-time CU rusher with 2,367 yards.

Set 18 individual records during his career, and left as school's all-time leading rusher and scorer.

Best games: In his first game as a tailback, Anderson put up 161 yards on Indiana. In his final game as a Buff, the hometown hero rushed for 254 yards and three TDs in the CU win over Alabama in the Liberty Bowl.

No one has rushed for more yards in a CU uniform than Eric Bieniemy. (Getty)

Eric Bieniemy
5-7, 195 pounds
1987-90
EB was a unanimous All-American at CU in 1990, the year CU won the national championship. Had 1,628 yards rushing that season and finished third in the Heisman voting. At 5-foot-7, Bieniemy was a bull between the tackles, but had the speed to turn the corner. Rushed for 1,243 as a true sophomore in 1988, and is the only Buff to rush for over 1,000 yards in two seasons.

No. 1 all-time on CU rushing list with 3,940.

No. 1 all-time scoring, 254 points.

Best games: In sleet and rain in Lincoln in 1990, Bieniemy atoned for four fumbles by scoring four fourth-quarter touchdowns, leading CU to a 27-12 victory, its first in Lincoln since 1967. Bieniemy had 137 yards in the game. The week before, he rushed for 188 yards against Oklahoma.

Chris Brown rushed for 1,744 yards in 2002. (Getty)

Chris Brown
6-3, 220 pounds
2001-02
Fearless runner with deceptive speed. Amassed 2,690 yards in just two seasons at Colorado. Came in as an unheralded junior college transfer and turned heads in August, moving ahead of Marcus Houston on the depth chart. Rushed for 946 yards in part-time duty that season. His 1,744 yards as a junior is second only to Salaam's Heisman year numbers. Named second team All-American that year. Was third in the NCAA in rushing as a junior. Probably would have been No. 1, but missed final two games with injury. Entered the NFL Draft after his junior year.

No. 5 all-time on CU rushing list.

Best games: Nebraska came into Boulder ranked No. 1/2 in November 2001, and Brown destroyed the Blackshirt defense like no other running back had before. He rushed for 198 yards and six touchdowns in the 62-36 win. He followed that with 182 yards against Texas in the Big 12 title game. The following season, he put up 309 yards at Kansas.

Bobby Purify
6-0, 215 pounds
2000-04
Always had good athleticism, Purify developed strong running back skills, such as understanding how to use his blockers, the more he played. Battled through several injuries in his career to finish as one of the top running backs to wear the black and gold. Whether he was part of a stellar rotation of backs, as in 2001, or was carrying the bulk of the load as he did last season, Purify was a steady ballcarrier when healthy. He was also among the best pass receiving backs in Buffs' history, as only six CU running backs caught more than Purify's 50 career catches.

No. 3 all-time on CU rushing chart with 3,016 yards.

Best games: Ran through and around the CSU defense for 191 yards on just 21 carries in CU's win over the Rams in 2001. Punished the Cornhuskers for 154 yards rushing later in the same season. Despite playing with sore shoulders, Purify ran for 155 and 130 yards vs. North foes Kansas State and Nebraska in consecutive weeks in 2004.

Rashaan Salaam is Colorado's lone Heisman Trophy winner. (Getty)

Rashaan Salaam
6-1, 215 pounds
1992-93
Strong runner with good legs and vision. Won the Heisman in 1994, his junior season. Rushed for a CU record 2,055 yards and a 6.9 yards per carry average that season. As a sophomore, sharing time with Lamont Warren, rushed for 844 yards. Turned pro after junior season.

No. 2 all-time at CU with 3,057 yards.

6.23 yards per carry life-time.

Best games: Had 141 yards rushing at Michigan in '94, the most the Wolverines had allowed at home in 21 years. Also had a key block in that game when Kordell Stewart scrambled and found Michael Westbrook on the legendary "The Catch" play. The following week, Salaam put 314 yards on Texas in a hot and humid day in Austin.

Vote for Colorado's top running back of all-time in Ralphie's Den: MESSAGE BOARD


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