SELECTING AN ALL-TIME list of the top running backs in WSU history is no easy task. But has gone through the names and numbers, poured back through our archives and old game stories and limited ourselves to a ledger of only five. The end result is this photo series on the best of the best.

Michael Black played only two years at WSU and doesn't have the numbers others might, his 1,181 rushing yards in 1997 seems gold in comparison, not platinum. But his skill and importance to the '97 Cougar offense became crystal clear when he was lost to injury early in the 1998 Rose Bowl, and that's what puts him on this list. Old timers still swear it's a different outcome against Michigan if he stays healthy. His 11 100-yard rushing games still places him fifth all-time at WSU.

Steve Broussard racked up 4,635 all-purpose yards over his WSU career. A 5-foot-7 block of granite who could turn on a dime, Broussard raced for 3,054 yards and caught 120 passes, which placed him among WSU's Top 10 in receptions until just recently. The Pac-10 Offensive Most Valuable Player in 1989 went on to become a first round NFL pick and played nine years in The League.

Jerome Harrison was named consensus All-America in 2005 after he ran wild to the tune of 1,900 yards on the ground. In his two-year career at WSU, "The Ghost" set the record for most consecutive games with 100 or more hashes by a Pac-10 runner (14) and rushed for 200 or more yards five times.

Keith Lincoln was a triple threat for the Cougs who ran, passed and kicked his way through the Washington State record book. The "Moose of the Palouse" set WSU career rushing and punting records in the early 1960s before becoming a perennial all-star for the San Diego Chargers.

Rueben Mayes set WSU, Pac-10 and NCAA rushing records in his College Hall of Fame career, including his famed 357 ground hashes against Oregon in 1984. His WSU career total of 3,519 rushing yards still stands, and he went on to become the Rookie of the Year in the NFL in 1986 and 2-time Pro Bowl pick before career-altering injury.

It's impossible to make such a list and not have at least one glaring omission. Shaumbe Wright-Fair had 15 100-yard rushing games and helped make Drew Bledsoe a star. Ken Grandberry was a legit star in his own right in the early 70s. Kerry Porter was terribly unsung. And that's just for starters. Don't see your favorite listed among the Top 5? Post on the CF.C message boards and tell us why.

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