Clemson's Best Tailbacks

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Clemson's Best Tailbacks

I started watching Clemson football in 1974 and can remember all of the great players over the last forty years. In the next couple of weeks I am going to give my thoughts on the greatest Tigers at every position over that 40 year span. I think it is only fair for me to comment on the players I actually saw play. So below is my ranking for the best tailbacks in school history.

1. C.J. SpillerC.J. Spiller
Pro Running Back
#28 5-11, 195
Lake Butler, FL

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Some believe Spiller is the best player in Clemson history. He had an incredible career including several of the most memorable plays in school history. For his career, Spiller had 3,547 rushing yards and 32 rushing touchdowns. Spiller is in the top 15 in receptions with 124. He is 19th in school history in receiving yards with 1,420. Spiller holds the Clemson record for career kickoff return yards with 2,052 and seven touchdowns. He holds the school record for all-purpose yards with 7,588 which is over 2,500 yards more than Derrick Hamilton, whose record he broke.

2. Raymond Priester

No one has had more rushing yards at Clemson than this durable back. Priester set the school record with 3,966 yards. He also had 21 rushing touchdowns. Priester has the top two rushing seasons in school history with 1,345 yards in 1996 and 1,322 yards in 1995. He also holds the school record with 263 yards rushing in one game.

3. Terry Allen

Allen played only three seasons at Clemson but he made a huge impact in that short time. Allen finished his career with 2,778 rushing yards and 28 rushing touchdowns. He had exceptional balance and ran as hard as any back in the last forty seasons.

4. James DavisJames Davis
Running Back
# 6-0, 205
Atlanta, GA

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Davis is one of the most popular backs in Clemson history. He is second in school history with 3,881 rushing yards and has the school record with 47 rushing touchdowns.

Davis also holds the Clemson record for rushing touchdowns in one season with 17.

He holds the record for the most starts at running back with 43. He is one of four players at Clemson to have two 1,000-yard rushing seasons.

5. Kenny Flowers

Flowers came into his senior season as a Heisman candidate but injuries hampered his final season at Clemson. Flowers was probably the best example of size and speed of any back I have seen at Clemson. Flowers ended his career with 2,914 rushing yards and 26 touchdowns.

6. Terrence Flagler

Flagler was a terrific athlete than spent most of his time behind Flowers but he came on strong as a senior after Flowers got hurt at Georgia. For his career, Flagler had 2,162 rushing yards and 17 touchdowns. Flagler's fantastic senior season included 1,258 of his rushing yards.

7. Andre EllingtonAndre Ellington
Running Back
#23 5-10, 195
Moncks Corner, SC

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Ellington was a very productive back in all four years at Clemson. He ended his career as one of only four players with two seasons over 1,000 yards rushing. Ellington had 3,436 yards rushing which is fourth in school history. His 33 rushing touchdowns are the third most in school history.

8. Lester Brown

The Rubber Duck had a great career with 2,238 yards from 1976-79. He set the school record with 31 rushing touchdowns. Brown is tied with James Davis with 17 rushing touchdowns which is the best in Clemson history.

9. Travis Zachery

Zachery had a very productive Clemson career. I loved his ability to catch the football. Zachery is one of five Clemson backs to rush for over 3,000 yards in his career. He is second with 41 rushing touchdowns.

10. Stacy Driver

Driver was a personal favorite because of his style despite his size. The Ricochet Rabbit is still 12th in school history in rushing with 2,293 yards and 15 touchdowns.

Ronald Williams was one of the best to ever play here. I would say he is one of the top five most talented backs but injuries held him back.

There have been several other running backs I considered for the top ten. Cliff Austin and Chuck McSwain would have been bigger factors if they did not have to split carries with each other. Wesley McFadden and Joe Henderson were terrific athletes that would have been better if it weren't for Terry Allen. Reggie Merriweather was unfortunate to play with James Davis and C.J. Spiller. Chad Jasmin enjoyed a great senior season as a power back. Charlie James was a phenomenal athlete who saw his career cut short by injuries.

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Those who need our prayers include: Finn Brookover, Jo Ann Bachman, Kenneth Bryant, Pruitt Martin, Got igers and his family, David Rowland, Leonard, Gillespie and his family, Jim S, Daniel Rosborough, The Huffman family, Nancy Winkler, John Reeve, Vinnie Brock, Kaitlyn L, Susan Miller, Joyce Harley, Steve Proveaux, Jeffrey Greene, the Hutto family, Sherl Drawdy, Caleb Kennedy, Teresa O'Connor, Matt Jacobs,Perrin Seigler, Candee Massee, Lindsey Jordan, Sam Catoe, Tyler Felch, the Nicolopulos family, "the Jacksonville, FL guys", Kim Sims, the Coyle family, Ryleigh Tedder, Steve Lee, Kelly Trakas, Jimmy Moore, the Thomas. V Family, Emary Claire Young, Kitty Bowers,Julie Locke, the Scheider family, Lauren Kittles' family, Frank Gentry, Joyce Bussey, Stacey McKeown, Dale Childs, Larry Lentz, Jr, Carl Sharperson, Scott Hannon, William Perry, Tyler Swaney, Lillian, Mark Feit, David Frame, Chad Berry, the family of Matthew M. Watson, the Dowis family, Shervin Messer, Alan Putnam, the Olivers, Lee Tate, Ronnie Abrams, Eddie Greene, the Jackson family, Bill Vader, Jim Taylor, Tina DeWitt, Rock Horne, Christopher Tuten, Bobby Wayne Thomas, Emma and Danielle Carothers, Robert Ditty, Mr. and Mrs. Murray Smith, Dot Cartee, Ayden Mills, Millie Heatley, Lynn Martin and family, Michael Pinson, Jake David family, Angie Crowley, Ira, Mike Tolson, Poly Wells, Dr. Muriel Bishop, Jack Cunningham, Emily Jefford Meister, Zachary Stoller, Aaron Clackum, Pat James, Cortney Moore, William Moore, Angelia and Savannah Anderson, William Ross, Meredith Legg, Scott Johns, Frank Carroll, Brandon ThompsonBrandon Thompson
Defensive Tackle
#98 6-2, 310
Thomasville, GA

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, Alvin Sammons, Georgine McAlhaney, Glen Davis, Mike Price, Clay Childers, Aaron Knight, Danielle Johnston and family, Nicholas Abrams, Lana Kuykendall, Gary, Gary G., William Huggins, Jim Bennett, Chantz Fowler, Ethel McElveen, Michele Gurganus, William Gentry, Lewis Usher and Tanya Sanders, Shon Cooper, Nick Collins, Travis Patterson, Amanda Peake, Danny Hammond, Chip Turner, Nick Collins, Allen Steen, The Sturkey Family, the Lance family, Marcus Lattimore, Nick Chrisley's family, Allison Williams, Lt. Kyle Walker, Summer and Joel Johnson, Nicole O'Donnell, James O. Johnson, Joy Pruett and family, Patrick Heher, Bill Schmidt, Jack Bailey, Bill Early, Gardner Family, Charles Turner, Kathy Bartholomew, Ray Sanders, David and Robin Blocker, J.R. Ray, Kenneth Kowe, Lauren Sielicki, Doug Bailey and family, Johnnie Walker, Jenna Phipps, Mark Lawrence, Harlan Sullins, Peter Laboy, Kat and Carlisle Jones, Elizabeth Galloway and family, Anita McDonald, Willard Harryman, Liz Surratt, Molly Senn, Jackie Shearer, Richard Sellers, Tim Drisdelle, Gregg Gregory, our great country and the men and women in uniform that protect and serve it every day plus their families.

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spacer Mickey Plyler's Blog: Clemson's Best Tailbacks
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spacer If that were the case, it'd be hard to leave Woody Dantzler
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spacer Re: Mickey Plyler's Blog: Clemson's Best Tailbacks
spacer Re: Mickey Plyler's Blog: Clemson's Best Tailbacks
spacer Yea Buddy Gore, Ray Yauger, Bill Mathis & others say hello!
spacer Re: Mickey Plyler's Blog: Clemson's Best Tailbacks
spacer Priester was a tough runner. But I also remember him
spacer I know many of you may not remember...
spacer Re: I know many of you may not remember...
spacer Don't ever forget Marvin Simms. Ask Danny.***
spacer Absolutely - and he replaced (more or less) another great
Smiling Tiger®
spacer CJ best Clemson player ever?
spacer Re: CJ best Clemson player ever?
spacer Ray Yauger?***
spacer Buddy Gore***
spacer Re: Buddy Gore***
spacer The "best" back, Terry Allen. Everyone else looking at 2nd*****
spacer I have the exact same top 4 in the same order but I had
spacer Paul Macko...he was a freight train***
spacer Re: Mickey Plyler's Blog: Clemson's Best Tailbacks
spacer Am I alone in thinking that CJ Spiller was NOT ...
spacer no, you're not alone... Spiller was explosive, and probably
dark side of the moo®
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spacer Re: Mickey Plyler's Blog: Clemson's Best Tailbacks
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