Iowa football: 30 greatest players in Hawkeyes history

Ricky Stanzi, Iowa Hawkeyes. (Photo by David Purdy/Getty Images)
Ricky Stanzi, Iowa Hawkeyes. (Photo by David Purdy/Getty Images) /
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Shonn Greene, New York Jets
Shonn Greene, New York Jets. (Photo by Jim McIsaac/Getty Images) /

Shonn Greene’s 2008 NCAA season was truly legendary. Every time he touched the ball that season, Iowa football fans everywhere would hold their breaths in anticipation about what he was about to do because most of the time, it was something spectacular.

With Ricky Stanzi coming into his own as a first-year starter, Greene carried the Hawkeyes to a 9-4 record, which included an Outback Bowl victory.

Greene finished the 2008 NCAA season with 1,850 yards and 20 rushing touchdowns, both single-season records for a Hawkeye. He also tied the season record for most points scored in a season with 120.

The incredible performance in 2008 led to Greene receiving the Doak Walker Award, given to the nation’s top running back, and being named First-Team All-American. He also finished sixth in the 2008 Heisman Trophy voting.

Had the Hawkeyes done better as a team and the Heisman candidate list not been relatively loaded, Greene could have had a decent shot at actually winning the award outright.

After a great junior year, Greene declared for the NFL Draft and was selected in the third round by the New York Jets.

He enjoyed brief moments of success in the NFL, but his 2008 NCAA season will always remain immaculate and legendary.