Barry Sanders made his impact in the NFL with the Detroit Lions, and he is a member of the College Football Hall of Fame and the Pro Football Hall of Fame as a result.
One place where it’s taken time for Sanders to get his just due is with Oklahoma State. In spite of winning the Heisman Trophy for the school, Sanders is only now going to see himself be inducted into the school’s ring of fame as well as get a statue for his contributuons.
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Late last week, this news was revealed by Oklahoma State. This season, Sanders is going to take his rightful place amongst the legends at the schoo.
As is pointed out, in fairness to Oklahoma State, they just started inducting folks into their Hall of Fame and Thurman Thomas was the first to go in. Sanders is obviously the next best option for the team given what he did for the school. In his career with the Cowboys, Sanders rushed for 3,556 yards and 48 touchdowns. 2,628 of those yards ad 37 of those touchdowns came in 1988. Those numbers were good enough to claim the Heisman Trophy for Sanders that year and get him selected as the third pick in the 1989 draft.
Now, those numbers are good enough to keep Sanders as Oklahoma State immortality forever, which is certainly special to see.
Sanders’ Career NFL Stats
To see Sanders run the ball for Lions fans through the years was to believe given what he was able to do with the team on the field. Sanders routinely had the quickness and deft ability to break plenty of ankles on the football field and remains one of the greatest highlights in the game fans love watching even years after his retirement. Athleticism is something that came naturally to Sanders, something that was constantly proved with every big play he turned in.
With the Lions, Sanders rushed for 15,269 yards and 99 touchdowns. He was routinely thought of as the best running back in the league, and would have shattered plenty of NFL rushing records had he decided to keep playing. Sanders, however, walked away from the game in 1999 on the eve of training camp, which stunned the Lions and all of their fans. The parties then went through a frustrating split for multiple years, based mostly upon the fact that the franchise made him pay back part of his contract amid retirement. It is a situation not unlike what has been happening with Calvin Johnson and the team.
Sanders Has Similar Honors in Detroit
While he doesn’t have a statue and potentially should, the Lions have rolled out the red carper for Sanders in his career already. Not only has he cracked the Hall of Fame, but he is on Detroit’s Pride of the Lions list as well, meaning he has his number retired and within the stadium wall of honor. Sanders also has the distinction of working with the Lions organization as an alumni ambassador, proving that he is an important figure in the game that has become revered for his work in the NFL.
Now, folks in college will get to understand that as well given this major honor from Oklahoma State.
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