Archie Griffin No. 4 on ESPN's list of greatest college football players

Ohio State's tailback Archie Griffin sprints towards the endzone during a game with Illinois, on November 2, 1974, in Columbus, Ohio. (AP Photo)
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COLUMBUS, Ohio - Buckeye great Archie Griffin landed at No. 4 on a list of the greatest players in the history of college football.

The poll was voted by a group of former coaches, players, administrators and media on the behalf of ESPN and its College Football 150 initiative to celebrate the 150th season of the sport.

Griffin was named as the fourth-greatest behind Jim Brown, Herschel Walker and Bo Jackson.

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The 11 Greatest Players in College Football History

  1. Jim Brown, Syracuse
  2. Herschel Walker, Georgia
  3. Bo Jackson, Auburn
  4. Archie Griffin, Ohio State
  5. Jim Thorpe, Carlisle
  6. Red Grange, Illinois
  7. Earl Campbell, Texas
  8. Dick Butkus, Illinois
  9. Barry Sanders, Oklahoma State
  10. Gale Sayers, Kansas
  11. Roger Staubach, Navy


During his time in Columbus, Griffin rushed for a school-record 5,589 yards.

He won the Heisman Trophy in 1974 and 1975, the only player to win the award twice.

A three-time All-American, Griffin was a member of four Big Ten Championship teams and is the only player to start four Rose Bowl games.

Griffin won two UPI Player of the Year Awards, two Big Ten MVPs, the Maxwell Trophy and the Walter Camp Award.

Ohio State retired his number in 1999.

Six other Buckeyes were named to ESPN’s 150 greatest players list:

  • No. 38 RB Eddie George (1992-95) – College Football Hall of Fame (2012) member won the 1995 Heisman Trophy and his name adorns the Big Ten Conference’s offensive player of the year award.
  • No. 44 SAF/LB Jack Tatum (1967-70) – Two-time unanimous All-American (1969-70) and College Football Hall of Famer (2004) whose name is on the Big Ten’s defensive back of the year award.
  • No. 47 RB Howard “Hopalong” Cassady (1952-55) – The first Heisman Trophy winner (1955) to surpass 2,000 total points in voting and who was inducted into the College Football Hall of Fame in 1979.
  • No. 51 OT Orlando Pace (1994-96) – 1996 Heisman Trophy finalist, a two-time winner of the Lombardi Award, Outland Trophy winner and member of the College (2014) and Pro (2015) football Halls of Fame.
  • No. 141 OG Jim Parker (1954-56) – Unanimous All-American (1956) and Outland Trophy winner who is a member of the College (1974) and Pro (1973) football Halls of Fame, respectively.
  • No. 143 LB Chris Spielman (1984-87) – 2009 inductee into the College Football Hall of Fame and the winner of the 1987 Lombardi Award was a unanimous (1987) and consensus (1986) All-American.
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