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The latest news and analysis on the Montlake Dawgs.

June 27, 2011 at 12:16 PM

UW’s Top 10 Offensive Players of the Pac-10 Era


We’ll start our review of the era that was Pac-10 football for the Washington Huskies with a look at what we rate as the Top 10 Offensive Players of that time.

Again, this is the Pac-10 era only — 1978-2010.

So that means no Warren Moon, whose career ended with the 1978 Rose Bowl (which was, in fact, the final Pac-8 football game ever played) or anyone whose career came before.

UW had four conference Offensive Players of the Year during the Pac-10 era — Marques Tuiasosopo (pictured above) in 2000, receiver Mario Bailey in 1991, running back Greg Lewis in 1990 and quarterback Steve Pelluer in 1983. Each of those will find their way onto this list as will a few others, so here we go.

1, Marques Tuiasosopo — His stats will never do justice to what he meant to the 1999 and 2000 teams, expecially the latter season when he took what might have been a 6-5 team or so without him to 11-1 and No. 3 in the nation.

2, Reggie Williams — Maybe this seems too high for Williams given the lack of big wins in his time. But no player in the era was as dominant individually.

3, Napoleon Kaufman — He’s the leading rusher in school history, and at the moment, the only UW player to rush for 1,000 or more yards three times.

4, Greg Lewis —- He’s UW’s No. 3 all-time leading rusher but second of those who played solely in the Pac-10 era. Pac-10 Offensive Player of the Year when he rushed for 1,407 yards in 1990.

5, Cody Pickett — Might have lacked the signature “big win” moment of some other UW QBs, but his numbers — he basically is at the top of every career and single-season passing category — are impossible to ignore.

6, Lincoln Kennedy — UW’s most decorated OL of the Pac-10 Era, winning the Morris Trophy — given to the top lineman in the conference as voted on by opposing defensive players — in both 1991 and 1992, Washington’s only OL to win that twice.

7, Olin Kreutz — Might have ranked higher than Kennedy had he stayed for his senior season. Won Morris Trophy as a junior in 1997.

8, Mario Bailey — Pac-10’s Offensive Player of the Year as UW won the national title in 1991 when he caught 18 TD passes, which remains a school record.

9, Jake Locker — Lacks the wins of everyone else on this list, but deserves inclusion for helping the program crawl out of its darkest hole, and providing hope throughout that time. Is also UW’s highest-drafted offensive player of the Pac-10 era.

10, Steve Pelluer — A three-year starter from 1981-83, leading UW to a 28-0 win over Iowa in the 1982 Rose Bowl. He was the conference’s Offensive Player of the Year in 1983 when he completed 65 precent of his passes, which remains a school single-season record.

Honorable mention: Paul Skansi (remains No. 2 on UW’s all-time receptions list with 161 from 1979-82 when he helped lead Huskies to back-to-back Rose Bowls in 1980-81); Corey Dillon (one incredible season but not enough to win what’s a career award); Brock Huard (great numbers but sadly lacked the big wins to crack this list); Damon Huard (pretty similar career to younger brother Brock); Chris Polk (might have made it after the year coming up); Tom Flick (one of most underrated QBs in UW history just fell short of this list); Billy Joe Hobert/Mark Brunell (seems hard to leave off QBs of the national title era. But for reasons of running into trouble or injury, each fell just short of the overall career numbers of others listed here); Joe Steele (remember that his career started in 1976, so he had just two in the Pac-10 era, and struggled with injury as a senior); Chad Ward (mammoth guard won Morris Trophy in 2000); Bern Brostek (center won Morris Trophy in 1989); Jacque Robinson (won MVPs of Rose and Orange bowls); Jerome Pathon (as spectacular as any UW receiver during the Pac-10 era); Ed Cunningham (cerebral center a leader of the national title team); Mark Bruener (probably the best overall TE of the Pac-10 era); Rod Jones (another great TE during an era when Washington helped define that position); Jerramy Stevens (off-field issues aside, on the field was most productive receiving TE in school history).

Next: Top 10 Defensive Players.



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