As part of our 100 days until Kansas football (maybe) series, we’re doing another countdown. This one features the best players to wear certain numbers for the football Jayhawks. Just as a side note, there is no way that we’re going 1-99 (although any suggestions in the comments are always welcome), so we’re going to highlight the very best from a certain number set. Last time we examined the numbers one through twenty. Today, we’ll look at the next batch, 21-39.
The Best of the Best
#21 John Hadl
John Hadl is one of the most important figures in the history of Kansas football, so it’s no wonder that he’s on this list. The running back/quarterback combo wasn’t just a Kansas legend, he became an NFL legend. He led the old AFL in passing yards three times, led the NFL in TD passes once, went to six Pro Bowls and was named a first team All-Pro in 1973.
If you look him up on Pro Football Reference, his comparative QBs range from Bob Griese, Jim Everett, Steve McNair, and Eli Manning. Pretty good. More here.
#32 John Riggins
Another NFL legend, as well as just being a human legend, John Riggins is one of the best to ever suit up in the crimson and blue. His best personal season at KU came in 1970 when he basically led the Big 8 in all rushing categories. Of course, Riggins’ real fame started once he became a pro. Fourteen years in the NFL with the Jets and Washington, Riggins was a force, scoring 104 touchdowns and winning a Super Bowl with Washington. He was also a bright personality as demonstrated here. Oh yeah, he’s also in the Pro Football Hall of Fame in Canton.
The Next Best
#32 Curtis McClinton
KU has produced some good running backs, haven’t they? Curtis McClinton is no exception. He averaged 4.5 yards per carry in his three year KU career and went on to nearly match that in his 9 years with the Kansas City Chiefs. Here’s some more in-depth stats and stories of Curtis.
#22 June Henley
We’ve got some pretty dang good additions in the “pretty great” section, starting with June Henley. June has had some personal issues over the years, but his production in a KU jersey is unquestioned. He tallied over 1,000 yards on the ground twice in crimson and blue, his freshman and senior seasons, and squeezed in some solid ones in between. He was a key component to those potent Glen Mason coached teams of the mid-nineties.
#23 Bert Coan
Bert Coan is known for much more than football. Read about it here. For that alone, the man deserves a place on this list and many other lists that include anything great about KU, especially when it comes to the detriment of those that hate us most, Missouri Tiger fans.
#24 Tony Sands
Everyone knows about Sands’ then record-breaking performance of 396 yards rushing in one game against Missouri and that performance alone would probably get him on this list, but his career was so much more than that. He led the Big 8 in all rushing statistics in 1991, and by all accounts, he is a good guy too.
#25 Darrell Stuckey
All Big 12 First team in 2008, Darrell Stuckey was a force to be reckoned with in the KU secondary. He finished his KU career with 295 tackles, the second most in school history by a DB. Darrell Stuckey played for the San Diego Chargers from 2010 until 2016.
Can you think of anyone else? Add your suggestions below because there is definitely someone that we’ve forgotten.