Morning Playbook – Looking back at LaDainian Tomlinson’s TCU career

Happy retirement LaDainian Tomlinson.

Congratulations to future Pro Football Hall of Fame running back LaDainian Tomlinson on retiring from a successful NFL career. Tomlinson retired Monday as the fifth all-time leading rusher and second on the rushing touchdown list in NFL history. Of course, before he became one of the top running backs in the pros Tomlinson was lighting up defenses at the college level and helping to place TCU back on the map.

Tomlinson rushed for 1,974 yards and 20 touchdowns in 1999 to help lead TCU to an 8-4 season under head coach Dennis Franchione. TCU’s eight wins that season was the highest win total for the Horned Frogs since winning eight games in 1986 in the old Southwest Conference. Tomlinson became a star as TCU started to build in to the program we know them as today. Against UTEP in his junior season Tomlinson rushed for a single game record of 406 yards and ended the season leading the nation in rushing. A year after knocking off USC in the Sun Bowl, Tomlinson and TCU picked up their second straight bowl victory with a 28-14 victory against No. 20 East Carolina in the Mobile Alabama Bowl.

Tomlinson’s senior season was a fitting end to a fine collegiate career. Tomlinson rushed for an NCAA-leading 2,158 yards and 22 touchdowns as TCU finished the year 10-2, the school’s best record since going 11-0 in 1938. Tomlinson once again ripped through UTEP’s defense, going off for 305 yards and three touchdowns on his way to winning the Doak Walker Award, Jim Brown Trophy and consensus first-team All-American honors.

If Tomlinson had gone to another school, would TCU be where they are today?

Anyway, it is Top Ten Week here at Crystal Ball Run, and we are counting down our own top ten all week. We started off by counting up from the bottom of our top ten, with No. 10 West Virginia and No. 9 Ohio State.

More links after the jump…

The contract details for Ohio State’s Urban Meyer were released yesterday, and it includes an escape clause from any Tressel-era surprises.

We are all excited to see what Mike Leach does with Washington State, and WSU Football Blog asks if recruiting is entering a new era or if it will be more of the same.

ESPN college basketball analyst Dick Vitale spoke out in defense of Joe Paterno over the weekend, and defended his own thoughts on Twitter. As for the Jerry Sandusky trial, it could be heading to jury by Thursday.

Meanwhile, the trial of Harvey Updyke is scheduled to commence today with jury selection. Updyke is charged for the poisoning of two oak trees at Auburn.

Les Miles’ private plane is for sale. Are you an interested buyer?

Texas quarterback Case McCoy thought his brother Colt was traded thanks to a fake ESPN Twitter account.

Our Aaron Torres explored the ten most annoying sports fans, and we suspect you can find some of these fans every Saturday if you look for them.

The folks at Leather Helmet Blog think Google Maps has revealed the secret location of the Auburn bag man.

Congrats to Jake from The Ole Miss Blog on the launch of his new radio show.

Optimum Scouting is on the lookout for the next Cam Newton and more.

Former West Virginia QB Pat White pursuing an acting career?

While we witness the potential demise of the WAC, the West Virginia Intercollegiate Athletic Conference is watching nine of its members split off to form their own conference at the Division 2 level.

Grambling head coach Doug Williams received a new three-year deal. You may remember that the former Super Bowl MVP filed a lawsuit against the school over his contract details.

Matt Hayes ranked the ACC non-conference schedules for The Sporting News.

Kristi Dosh talks conference revenues and costs and realignment on ESPN.com.

It is just about watch list season.

Akron’s football poster, starring Terry Bowden.

Kevin McGuire

About Kevin McGuire

Managing editor of Crystal Ball Run and contributor to College Football Talk on NBCSports.com. Member of the FWAA and National Football Foundation. College Football Hall of Fame voter. Also managing Bloguin's NittanyLionsDen.com and Macho-Row.com.

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