Wisconsin Football: Top 10 Running Backs since Ron Dayne

INDIANAPOLIS, IN - DECEMBER 02: Running back Jonathan Taylor (Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images)
INDIANAPOLIS, IN - DECEMBER 02: Running back Jonathan Taylor (Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images) /
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Brian Calhoun

Wisconsin Football - Brian Calhoun
ORLANDO, FL – JANUARY 2 (Photo by Doug Benc/Getty Images) /

Years played: 2005

Career rushing yards (at Wisconsin): 1,636

Career rushing touchdowns (at Wisconsin): 22

Honors/Awards: First team All-Big Ten (2005)

Notes: Caught 53 passes for 571 yards and two touchdowns in 2005. Led Big Ten, third in NCAA, in rushing touchdowns (22) in 2005. Led Big Ten, fourth in NCAA, in rushing yards (1,636) in 2005.

Calhoun’s Game

Calhoun was a special player during his one season at Wisconsin. He was one of the best backs in the country and stuffed the stat sheet accordingly.

Calhoun was a handful for opposing defenses. He’s only number 10, but he very well could be the most diverse back on the list. Whenever he was on the field you could be certain he was going to pick up some yards. The only problem for the defense was he could pick them up on the ground and through the air.

Calhoun had 53 catches for over 500 yards in 2005, which would be a good season for most Badger receivers. Add in the 1,600+ rushing yards and the 22 rushing touchdowns, a then record in the Big Ten, and you have a season unlike any other. Calhoun was part of a 10-win team in 2005 that beat an Auburn team ranked 7th in the country in the Outback Bowl. Calhoun rushed for over 200 yards against Auburn, cementing his spot in Badger history.

Calhoun’s Legacy

Calhoun only spent one year in Madison after transferring from Colorado to be closer to home; he went to Oak Creek High School in Wisconsin. For as special as Calhoun was, he left some to be desired when he left for the NFL draft following his incredible 2005 season.  The 2006 Badgers lost only one game on their way to a Capital One Bowl win over Arkansas and a top-10 finish in the final polls. Freshman bulldozer P.J. Hill led the way on the ground for the Badgers that year. Calhoun wasn’t missed as much on paper, but on the field he could have elevated the offense to a completely new level.

Calhoun is still undoubtedly one of the best running backs Wisconsin has ever seen. His spot on this list could have been higher had he played more than one year in Madison, but he has a spot nonetheless. His 2005 season and the performance he put on against Auburn should be remembered fondly. To this day, he remains one of the most electric players to ever grace the Wisconsin backfield.