All-Time Greatest – No. 37: Joey Galloway

BuckeyeSports.com counts down the days until Ohio State's 2008 season opener with its list of the 50 greatest Buckeyes of all-time. The series continues today with No. 37: wide receiver and kick returner Joey Galloway.

Had Joey Galloway set his mind to it, he could have been a major star in any of three sports other than football.

At an early age, he thought perhaps about pursuing a career in basketball. After all, he averaged 22 points per game at Bellaire (Ohio) High School. Then there was baseball, where he was a consistent hitter and stole 27 bases in just 15 games as a prep junior. The rest of his high school springs were spent with the track team, where he used his 4.35 speed in the 40-yard dash to anchor the spring events.

But football was the sport in which Galloway excelled the most, and when he signed with Ohio State in February 1990, the Buckeyes knew they were getting an excellent wide receiver prospect. By the time his career had ended, he had become one of the top players at his position in college football.

Born Nov. 20, 1971, in Bellaire, Joseph Scott Galloway got to OSU as a smallish 6-0, 170-pound freshman and was redshirted in 1990. The following season, he fought off an early-season ankle injury to wind up with 14 catches for 255 yards and one touchdown in a backup role. But he served notice during the Buckeyes' 24-17 loss to Syracuse in the Hall of Fame Bowl – six catches for 88 yards – that he was going to be ready for a larger role the following season.

Unfortunately, his 1992 season was over before it really got started. Galloway electrified the Ohio Stadium crowd with a 50-yard touchdown run on a reverse in the opener against Louisville, but then tore the ACL in his right knee the following week against Bowling Green. He was out for the rest of the season as well as contact drills for the next spring.

Galloway rehabbed like a demon, however, and returned in 1993 as a chiseled 5-11, 186-pounder who could bench press in the neighborhood of 400 pounds. That new power, coupled with speed regained from the surgically-repaired knee, allowed for a breakout season.

As the Buckeyes compiled a 10-1-1 record, their best in 14 seasons, Galloway led the team with 47 receptions for 946 yards and 11 TDs. He added two more touchdowns on reverses, allowing him to become the first receiver to lead Ohio State in scoring since Bob Grimes tied for the lead in 1952.

Galloway was touted as a preseason Heisman Trophy candidate in 1994, but he was suspended for two of the Buckeyes' first three games of the season for taking a small amount of money (reportedly just $200) from a financial planner.

He repaid the money quickly, sat out the games, and returned to finish a superlative career by catching 44 passes for 669 yards and seven touchdowns. He added one more TD on the ground and another on a 93-yard kickoff return.

Galloway finished his career tied for fourth on Ohio State's all-time list in receptions with 108, fourth in receiving yardage with 1,894 and second in touchdown catches with 19. On each of those lists, he still ranks among the school's career top 10.

The Seattle Seahawks made Galloway their first-round selection in the 1995 NFL draft, taking him with the eighth selection overall. He played five seasons in Seattle before moving on to Dallas, and has spent the past five seasons in Tampa Bay.

Over the course of his 13-year career, Galloway has been remarkably consistent, logging nine seasons of 50 or more catches and six seasons of at least 1,000 yards receiving including each of the last three.

His lifetime statistics for 176 NFL games (166 of which are starts): 669 receptions, 10,572 yards, 77 TDs.

Galloway is currently 12th among active players in terms of career receptions, seventh in receiving yards and fifth in touchdowns. Only Terrell Owens (129), Randy Moss (124), Marvin Harrison (123) and Isaac Bruce (84) have more.

Yesterday: No. 38 Shawn Springs

Tomorrow: No. 36


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