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How Does Ezekiel Elliott Compare to Other tOSU RBs?

How Does Ezekiel Elliott Compare to Other tOSU RBs?

  • 1st

    Votes: 20 32.8%
  • 2nd

    Votes: 29 47.5%
  • 3rd

    Votes: 9 14.8%
  • 4th

    Votes: 2 3.3%
  • 5th

    Votes: 1 1.6%
  • Not in top 5

    Votes: 0 0.0%

  • Total voters


Illuminatus Emeritus
Staff member
BP Recruiting Team
Ezekiel Elliott compared to other great Ohio State running backs:

Ohio State Running BackGamesTotal CarriesYards RushingYards/CarryYards/Game100+ Yards200+ YardsTouchdowns
Archie Griffin469245,5896.0121.534226
Ezekiel Elliott395923,9616.7101.622543
Eddie George486833,7685.578.520544
Tim Spencer476443,5535.575.613036
Beanie Wells365853,3825.893.917230
Keith Byars376193,2005.286.517146
Carlos Hyde415233,1986.178.016237
Hopalong Cassady354352,4665.770.59031
Where does Zeke rank on your list of all-time greats?
Archie was before my day, but certainly in my lifetime Elliott is the best. I've got a ton of respect for Eddie and his Heisman, Beanie's stiff arm, and Hyde's combination of power and speed, but Zeke has it all--the blocking, the pass-catching (which I think we'd all agree we should have seen more of), the power, and the breakaway speed. And, barring injury, I think it's safe to say that if he played all four years like Archie did, Zeke would have broken Archie's all-time OSU yardage record (Zeke would've needed 1,629 yards to break that record, and he's had 1,800+ yards in each of the last two seasons).
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LJB--any idea how many games Archie and Zeke each was the "feature back" on his team? I suspect the "games" disparity between the two would be much larger than 7 if that were taken into account--Zeke was only the feature back for around 28 or so games (this year's 13 and last year's 15).
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In addition to the career stats, Zeke had the best 3 game run of any running back in college football history in the '14 post season which helped win OSU a championship.

He's #1 in my book.

Just to remind everyone of those stats:

vs. Wisconsin: 20 carries, 220 yds, 11.0 ypc, 2 TDs
vs. Alabama: 20 carries, 230 yards, 11.5 ypc, 2 TDs
vs. Oregon: 36 carries, 246 yards, 6.8 ypc, 4 TDs
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LJB--any idea how many games Archie and Zeke each was the "feature back" on his team? I suspect the "games" disparity between the two would be much larger than 7 if that were taken into account--Zeke was only the feature back for around 28 or so games (this year's 13 and last year's 15).
Archie's first game was against Iowa on September 16, 1972. The official stat sheet for the game shows that he played but that he did not have any carries.

Archie's second game came the following week against North Carolina, where he rushed 27 times for 239 yards and a touchdown. He started for the rest of his career.

Zeke did not start a game as a true freshman in 2013 (Jordan Hall started during Carlos Hyde's suspension). Zeke started every game in 2014 and 2015.

So, as a featured back: Archie 45, Zeke 28
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It's really hard for me to admit it, but he's probably the best RB in tOSU history.

If you put Beanie behind either Eddie's or Zeke's OL...not to mention Archie had nearly twice the carries as Beanie...tho that depends on him remaining healthy, and that definitely wouldn'tbe a given.

Zeke played in an offense that limited his carries and still managed to get to 2nd place all time yards. He's been impressive and surpassed any expectations we had.

I'd say its...

1. Zeke
2. Archie
3. Beanie
4. Eddie /MoC
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Such a difficult question. It's very difficult, due to Nostalgia, what hes meant to the college and the CFB landscape as a whole over the years as an ambassador and his 2 Heismans to ever put another RB over Archie. I want to say Zeke is better, and he has probably better size and speed than Archie, but I'd have to put Archie first followed by EzE.

My personal top 5:
1. Archie
2. Zeke
3. Eddie
4. Mo C
5. Beanie
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For me I also like to take into consideration the offensive philosophy each players respective coaches adhered to.

With Woody you knew what was going to happen and whom was getting the ball.

While the formations were different and the offense more balanced, with Coop and Eddie still knew who the work horse was.

With Zeke you have an offense that gives an additional running threat in the backfield at all times coupled with multiple receiver sets to get defenders out of the box for a favorable count.

Because of that I still go...

1) Archie
2) Eddie
3) Zeke
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2nd only because of Archie's 2 Heisman's and that in almost every game he played, the opposing team was lining up to stop him and no one else. No passing game to speak of to lighten Archie's load. It was all him with some help from Henson, Johnson and Greene. Plus Archie's TD totals would be a lot higher had not Woody gave the ball to either Henson or Johnson almost every time inside the 5 yard line.

1. Archie
2. Zeke
3. Eddie (very close between Zeke and Eddie, very close)

And what no love for Raymont Harris?:slappy:
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I think the Zeke vs Archie argument is a lot like the Derrick Henry vs Zeke argument we were having this season. Archie had more total carries, so he put up better career numbers. The era debate is the reason we'll never agree on a unanimous #1. Being what the all-around player Zeke is and that he put up Heisman caliber seasons, I'll take him as the best.
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Because of his all around ability and effort, plus the nature of the game anymore, I say 2nd. I wasn't alive for the Archie Era, but you can't deny the legacy he has here.

But I had to think long and hard in answering this one and I think it could go either way. Zeke is a one of a kind talent and he's always going to hold a special place in my heart.
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