The Washington football program has been blessed with a bunch of star running backs, as guys like Myles Gaskin, Hugh McElhenny, Bishop Sankey and Greg Lewis have all made their mark on the program. However, when it comes to the best of the best, that honor goes to Napoleon Kaufman, who took the Pac-10 by storm during his time wearing the purple and gold.
Kaufman was a three-time First-Team All-Pac-10 honoree as a member of the Huskies, shattering plenty of school records along the way. He is one of three running backs in school history to go for over 1,000 yards in three consecutive seasons. Kaufman was a second-team All-American during the 1994 campaign.
In that year, Kaufman finished ninth in the Heisman Trophy balloting and is widely considered the best running back in the history of the Washington program. He ran with such power and such grace. Kaufman was named the team’s Most Valuable Player in both the 1993 and 1994 college football seasons.
A first-round pick of the Oakland Raiders, Kaufman had a solid NFL career, and still holds the Raiders single-game rushing record. In Week 8 of the 1997 NFL season, Kaufman rushed for 227 yards against the Denver Broncos, which was the team that went on to win the Super Bowl that year.
A member of the University of Washington Hall of Fame, Kaufman went from being a USA Today All-American in high school, as well as a track star, to being an absolute monster toting the rock for the Huskies.