Monday, July 17, 2006

Jamie Morris: All-Purpose yardage leader

Jamie Morris (1984-1987) is still U of M's all-time leading All-Purpose yardage gainer. Even though the A-Train, Anthony Thomas, passed Morris on Jan. 1, 2001 as Michigan's all-time rushing leader (4,472 yards to 4,393 yards), Thomas was not able to match Morris' All-Purpose mark of 6,201 yards. Thomas finished his U of M career with exactly 6,000 all-purpose yards.

Morris was a triple-threat player for Bo as not only could he run but he was also a good pass catching running back and he was a very dangerous kickoff returner. During his career, Morris hauled in 99 receptions for 756 yards good for a 7.6 yard/avg. He was even more dangerous when he was returning kickoffs as he returned 51 kickoffs for a total of 1,027 yards during his career placing him #4 all-time on the kickoff return yardage list for U of M.

In Morris' senior season (1987) he rushed for 1,703 yards which is the 3rd best single season total ever posted by a Wolverine. (Incidentally, #2 is Anthony Thomas who ran for 1,733 yards during his senior season). Morris is the only player in Michigan history to lead the Wolverines in rushing four years. Despite his stature, or maybe because of it, Morris was one of the best running backs to ever wear the maize and blue. Because of a similarilty in height, people often compare the Wolverines current star running back, 5'9" Mike Hart, to the legendary Jamie Morris. If Hart stays healthy for the next two seasons I think he has a real shot at breaking the all-time rushing record. However, Hart will not come close to catching Morris' all-purpose yardage mark. Thus, I think Morris' record is safe at least until the next #23 (Carlos Brown) takes the field.

Morris is still trying to set records for U of M these days but in a different manner. Morris works for the University's Athletic Department as a Development Manager and he is responsible for working on the Department's fundraising efforts as they attempt to raise $100 million by 2008. Morris also hosted the 2005 U of M Football Bust put on by the U of M Club of Greater Detroit. He, not suprisingly, was one of the best Master of Ceremonies they ever had host the event. Not only does Morris still hold the record for All-Purpose yardage, he still has his legendary smile. Go Blue!

*Note: Photo of Jamie Morris was taken by Brad Mills a former U of M student photographer.

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