Dec. 1, 2000
EVANSTON, Ill. -
Northwestern junior running back Damien Anderson (Wilmington, Ill./Wilmington) was named today as one of three finalists for the prestigious Doak Walker Award Presented by Vectrix. The Walker Award is given annually to the top running back in the nation.
Anderson is joined as a finalist by Michigan's Anthony Thomas and TCU's LaDainian Tomlinson. The winner will be announced live on the Home Depot College Football Awards Show -- which will air on ESPN at 8 p.m. central on Thursday, December 7 -- and will be presented his award at the Doak Walker Award Presentation Banquet in Dallas on Tuesday, January 30.
Anderson, who has been named All-America by four media outlets already this postseason, was one of the main reasons the Wildcats won a share of the Big Ten title and earned a spot in the SYLVANIA Alamo Bowl. He set several school records this season, prominent among them the single-season records for rushing yards (1,914) and touchdowns (22). He finished second nationally in rushing with 174.0 yards per game, and shattered Lorenzo White's Big Ten records for rushing yards (1,549) and rushing average (193.6) in conference games. Most amazingly, Anderson set the conference marks with 54 fewer carries than White needed in 1985. Overall, Anderson averaged a staggering 6.5 yards per carry in 2000, and he did not fumble on any of his 293 rushing attempts this season.
Anderson had four games over the 200-yard mark, a school record, including a 292-yard day against Indiana that was the third-best rushing day in school history and a 268-yard day against Michigan that was the best individual rushing performance ever against a Wolverine defense by 67 yards. He also had four-touchdown games against Indiana and Illinois, tying a single-game mark in the process.
With one full season still to play, Anderson has 3,579 yards rushing which leaves him 214 yards shy of Darnell Autry's all-time school rushing record.