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November 5, 2014
By Stan Silliman


SAMAJE ROCKS ‘HAWKS
 


Samaje Perine carries the rock, runs past the chalk, smashes the Jayhawks. On his way to a 427 yard rushing day, I even heard Kansas fans cheering him on – Rock, Chalk, Jayhawks!!  They are what I’d call good sports. Even as they were carting one Jayhawk defender after another who merely happened to step in Samaje’s way, they kept cheering the young hulk on.
 
It’s not every game where one runner will run for more than the total of the opposing team. Let me take that back. That happens all the time. What I meant to say is “It’s not every game where a runner will run for more than the opposing team totals… ON HIS FIRST CARRY.” That’s what I meant to say. It was a terrible, rainy day with poor field conditions and Kansas, for the entire game, could only eke out 19 measly rushing yards.
 
Who could blame them? You had to be a first class mudder (horse race junkie term) to gain yards in a downpour… on a grass field… where the game had been delayed ninety minutes because of lightning. No normal football playing human person should be able to get more than 19 yards in those lousy conditions. We salute the Kansas players for being normal humans. It’s not like the Jayhawks had Mark Mangino walking their sidelines where he could just jump up and down and tilt the field to where it gave his team an advantage. It should also be noted they didn’t have Wilt Chamberlain walking their sideline where he could just reach out and grab offenders trying to harm his Jayhawks. Kansas, on this day, had no super humans, only humans. And that’s nothing to be ashamed of.  
 
Samaje Perine, the freshman running back, however, should be ashamed… for smashing a single game rushing mark – 408 yards - set by Melvin Gordon of Wisconsin that lasted all of one week. At least, Gordon gave LaDainian Tomlinson fifteen years to savor his old mark of 406 yards.  Forgive young Samaje for not allowing Gordon sufficient party time. After all, the kid’s just a freshman.
 
LaDainian sent Gordon a note of congratulations for breaking his record. LT tweeted “That kid @MelvinGordon25 bad. Congrats on breaking the NCAA rushing record. #respect” We’re sure Melvin Gordon sent a similar note to Perine. However, it looks like Gordon shut down his twitter account on September 12th except for a thank you reply to LaDainian Tomlinson.  

Perine did tell us Gordon sent him congratulations by way of a personal message, not a public tweet. He also told Perine that a lot of responsibility and distractions come with holding the rushing record. Gordon should know. He held it for all of one week.

A lot of Wisconsin Badger fans seem upset Perine broke Gordon’s record. They claim 408 yards in the snow is more impressive than 427 yards in a rainstorm. Ease up, Badger fans. Perine didn’t even care he got the record. He had asked to be taken out of the game. He is as humble as you’ll find, a slightly bigger version of Barry Sanders. He appreciates Gordon’s kind words and he might break his own record someday.  And when he does, don’t expect a ton of gloating, just better meals for his offensive linemen.
 




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