View from the Booth: Who's the best RB in Utah history?

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  • govt rocks Salt Lake City, UT
    Nov. 19, 2011 11:30 a.m.

    Rodgers, Monroe, Eddie Johnson did far more with much less. White is having a fantastic year, especially when you consider he did nothing in 3 games.

    Nov. 18, 2011 11:18 p.m.

    wwookie, did you not read the part about him still averaging 5 yards per carry despite being the offense's only real threat? If you took away a lot of his late 4th quarter carries when he only picks up a couple yards to drain the clock, it would be a bit higher. I think that is very quality.

  • wwookie Payson, UT
    Nov. 18, 2011 2:45 p.m.

    Utah has put as many RBs into the NFL as the TDS has QBs. Utah would be known as the RB factory if it weren't also true that utah keeps putting out great defenders.

    Top RB in my time would go to mike, but even players like warfield and ganther were amazing backs. If utah was as run heavy in their years, white wouldn't have reached top 10 yet.

    White is amazing partly because he came from virtual obscurity to one of the pac's best backs. Partly because he is small and quick, but can still carry over 30 per game - and he gets stronger later in the game. One more year with a great o-line and he will be considered one of the greats. Right now a lot of his success is due to quantity, not always quality.

  • cowboy99 South Jordan, UT
    Nov. 18, 2011 2:02 p.m.

    Luke Staley won the Doak Walker award. Enough said. Just because he suffered a career ending injury doesn't change the fact that he was the best college running back ever to come out of Utah.

  • ksmith Sacramento, CA
    Nov. 18, 2011 1:45 p.m.

    John Ogden, Eldon Fortie, Reynor Pierce, Kelly Smith

  • davidutefan Evanston, WY
    Nov. 18, 2011 12:42 p.m.

    Mike Anderson is my choice but, John White IV is making a strong case for himself. He's only played 10 games so the jury's still out. My favorite play was Ma'afala in a game against UTEP where this skinny little DB tried to step in front of him and he didn't even alter his course on the way to the end zone and the DB was carried off the field. He didn't stay for his senior year and with his weak ankles, I would rule him out.

  • Jones67 Tooele, UT
    Nov. 18, 2011 12:40 p.m.

    1. Carl Monroe - 1,507 yards in 11 games in 1982. 2. Eddie Johnson - over 1,000 yards his freshman year 3. Del "Popcorn" Rodgers

  • Ute1982 MIDVALE, UT
    Nov. 18, 2011 12:14 p.m.

    I really love watching John White this year. He's so tough and quick and reliable. But I learned to love the Utes because of Ma'afala. It was fun to watch him run over defenders. Hard to pick a favorite.

    Nov. 18, 2011 11:51 a.m.

    I would have to say Jamal Anderson, and for the best and one of the smallest backs John White IV. Aarrrrrroooooooooooh!!! GO UTES!!!!!

  • Me, Myself and I Blanding, UT
    Nov. 18, 2011 10:46 a.m.

    I'm surprised nobody mentioned Marty Johnson. Had he not made the poor decisions he did and missed a year of not only play but practice the sky would have been the limit for him. My criteria would be an all around back, a back with decent speed, power and able to be a receiving threat out of the back field. With that said I would say the top five backs would be, 1. Jamal Anderson, 2. Mike Anderson, 3. John White, 4. Marty Johnson and 5. Darrell Mack and Eddie Wide I put both of these backs together simply because they were both back-ups who when called upon delivered in big ways. I really think if Asiata hadn't blown out his knee he would have been in the top 3. Let's not forget he was leading the nation in rushing before that injury, and not by a small margin.

  • Ernest T. Bass Bountiful, UT
    Nov. 18, 2011 10:24 a.m.

    It's obviously JJ Deluiji. He's in Utah and the very bestest.

  • Utesby3 Sandy, UT
    Nov. 18, 2011 9:59 a.m.

    My vote is for Mike Anderson. Jamaal Anderson would be my number 2, John White would be number 3, and Ma'Afala would be my number 4. Ma'Afala was great if you needed 3-5 yards as he could get short gains almost everytime he touched the ball, but rarely broke out for huge gains. Also, teams did learn how to tackle him.

    @ ChuecoCoug: No BYU running back compares to any of the four Utes backs I mentioned above.

  • Eddie Would Go FPO, AE
    Nov. 18, 2011 9:57 a.m.


    Those are some pretty good running backs, but this is a discussion of Utah RBs.

    Of those you listed, I like Unga and Jenkins. They could score on and off the field!

  • UgottaloveMaxie Murray, UT
    Nov. 18, 2011 9:47 a.m.

    @ChuecoCoug - funny how not one of those guys ever played in the NFL. Ok, on a roster but really?

  • Mormon Ute Kaysville, UT
    Nov. 18, 2011 9:31 a.m.

    I like Mike Anderson and Maafala. If Maafala had worked harder in the offseason, he would have been hands down the best and would have been a great NFL RB.

  • Dad05 Kaysville, UT
    Nov. 18, 2011 9:22 a.m.

    John White is the best. He's the only one who's done what he's done in the Pac-12. Not the same as running against WAC or MWC teams. And he's carried the team.

  • deth Orem, UT
    Nov. 18, 2011 9:10 a.m.

    As a cougar fan who watched only sometimes, I would say Jamaal Anderson and Maafala. John White IV is extremely impressive this year and could end up being the best. Especially given the quarterback situation.

  • reasonableUTE Provo, UT
    Nov. 18, 2011 8:59 a.m.

    White is on pace to finish the season on top, and he's done it against better competition. Imagine what awesome numbers he'd be putting up if we were still in the MWC. Add on top of that the fact that everyone knows he's getting the ball... If you put a brick wall in front of this guy he would do his darndest to run through it, whilst having the time of his life. Watching him is the most fun I have had as a Ute!

  • ChuecoCoug Ogden, UT
    Nov. 18, 2011 8:47 a.m.

    The best are Luke Staley, Harvey Unga, Ronnie Jenkins, Jamal Willis and Curtis Brown.

  • TrueUte Holladay, UT
    Nov. 18, 2011 7:48 a.m.

    A couple of things that you have to consider also are the players around them. Some of those past running backs had no lines to really block like these guys? Also some of those teams had no defenses. I do not think you really can decide on one player like that because there are so many factors.
    I do know that White has earned all the accolades he has recieved and will recieve.

  • bgl Santa Monica, CA
    Nov. 18, 2011 6:09 a.m.

    3. Del Popcorn Rodgers
    2. Eddie Johnson
    1. Aaaaaaarrrrrroooooooooooooh--(ahem--the Wolfman).

  • AZJazzFan Gold Canyon, az
    Nov. 18, 2011 12:11 a.m.

    Here is another vote for Jamal Anderson. Next is Maafala and then Mike Anderson.

  • Winglish Lehi, UT
    Nov. 17, 2011 11:30 p.m.

    Jamal Anderson ran for over 1800 yards and scored 14 touchdowns in a single season in the NFL in 1998. He did the "Dirty Bird" in the Super Bowl and was widely considered one of the top five backs in the NFL before the ACL tear. Jamal was the best the Utes ever had!

  • GolfMidway MIDWAY, UT
    Nov. 17, 2011 10:27 p.m.

    I sure loved watching Eddie Johnson - he was just so smooth. Fuamatu- Maafala was so powerful - I loved watching him blow up people trying to tackle him - same with Jamal Anderson. Mike Anderson had a few of those massive yardage games like the bowl game vs USC that were fun to watch. But I have to admit - I love watching John White - for the speed, the elusiveness and maybe most of all how dang tough he is - he really is great at blocking when he needs to - I am so glad the Utes have John White - it has made the season really fun despite some challenging games and I am glad Asiata is helping to spring White - good combo - hope Asiata gets a chance to be a fullback in the NFL.

  • Magna Ute Fan Magna, UT
    Nov. 17, 2011 10:13 p.m.

    In my 17 years of watching fairly seriously, Chris Fuamatu-Maafala stands out as the most memorable. It seems like it took 2-3 defenders to bring him down. He was sure fun to watch.

  • jake heaps = ben olson Orem, UT
    Nov. 17, 2011 9:52 p.m.

    Jamal Anderson, Juan Johnson, M'Afala, Mike Anderson, John White.

  • KamUte South Jordan, UT
    Nov. 17, 2011 9:06 p.m.

    I thought Jamaal Anderson was one of the best. Mant games we simply gave Jamaal the ball and he would carry the team. Everyone knew he was getting the ball and nobody could stop him. Very physical runner.

  • 79Ute Orange County, CA
    Nov. 17, 2011 8:58 p.m.

    Bud Scalley!

  • hsfbfan#1 MIDVALE, UT
    Nov. 17, 2011 8:56 p.m.

    EJ!EJ!EJ! Eddie Johnson was the MAN! My vote for #1