Oregon senior Kenjon Barner has already knocked his good friend LaMichael James out of the way once on the Ducks’ all-time single-season rushing list.
Can he do it again?
With a bowl game left to play, Barner sits fourth in school history with 1,624 rushing yards, having displaced James and his 2009 total of 1,546 at No. 4 on the all-time list. Barner, the 19th 1,000-yard rusher in school history, could push past at least one more of James’ single-season totals with a big performance in the Ducks’ bowl game.
With 98 yards in the bowl, Barner would match Jonathan Stewart’s third-place total of 1,722 yards from 2007, and with 107 he’d match LaMichael James’ second-place total of 1,731, set in 2010.
James is the program’s all-time leader with the 1,870 yards he amassed last season, a total that is 246 yards away for Barner.
That top spot is well within reach for Barner, as well, particularly when you consider what he did at USC earlier this season.
Barner set a school record with his 321 rushing yards in a 62-51 victory over the Trojans on Nov. 3, obliterating the previous record of 288, set by James last season at Arizona. Onterrio Smith has the third-best rushing game in Oregon history with 285 yards in a 2001 win at Washington State.
Thing is, moving up at all is not a given for Barner. While his best games from this season suggest he could relatively easily take over the No. 2 spot on the single-season list, he’s also had five games with fewer than the 98 yards he’d need to reach third place. Granted, one of those was during a nine-carry performance in just a quarter-and-a-half of play against Arkansas State, when he rushed for 66 yards and two TDs, and the other was in another limited performance, when he had 57 yards and a touchdown in a blowout of Tennessee Tech. But before rattling off 198 yards and two TDs against Oregon State last week, Barner had back to back games with 65 and 66 yards, against Cal and Stanford, respectively.
Barner is already second on the school’s all-time career rushing mark, despite having only spent one season as a full-time starter. He’s got 3,480 total rushing yards, second behind James’ school-record 5,082 and ahead of Stewart’s 2,891.
Here’s a look at Oregon’s top 10 rushing seasons of all time as the list stands before the Ducks’ bowl game:
Oregon’s top 10 rushing seasons
- LaMichael James, 2011 — 1,805
- LaMichael James, 2010 — 1,731
- Jonathan Stewart, 2007 — 1,722
- Kenjon Barner, 2012 — 1,624*
- LaMichael James, 2009 — 1,546
- Saladin McCullough, 1997 — 1,343
- Reuben Droughns, 1999 — 1,234
- Bobby Moore, 1971 — 1,211
- Derek Loville, 1988 — 1,202
- Jeremiah Johnson, 2008 — 1,201
* — with one game left to play.
2012 Oregon football statistics
Oregon football almanac
Adam Sparks has been following Oregon Ducks football since 1990, and has written about the team as a freelancer since 2009.