Welcome to the another edition of LET US DELIGHT IN, a weekly feature in which we, well, delight in the performance of a particular football player from the previous weekend. This week, we are delighting in the performance of Stanford running back Christian McCaffrey.
I wanted to give this to L.J. Scott. Sometimes the fleeting moment of incredible individual brilliance can be more impressive than prolonged excellence, but I couldn't do it this time. Just know, Mr. Scott, that your moment of Grown-Ass-Mannedness on the final touchdown run that gave Michigan State the Big Ten title and a Playoff berth is one of the toughest damn things I've seen on a football field in some years.
But Jesus tap dancing Christ, Christian McCaffrey, what on earth got into you?
32 carries for 207 yards and a touchdown. Four catches for 105 yards and a touchdown. An 11-yard touchdown pass to Kevin Hogan. 149 total return yards. Like, imagine flexing this hard.
That's 461 all-purpose yards, a new school record, and he also broke Barry Sanders' record for all-purpose yards in a season with 3,496. Yes, it's true that Sanders set the record in two fewer games, but McCaffrey only finished with 16 more touches than Sanders did in 1988 -- 410 to 394 -- and pushed the record past Sanders' mark by 246 yards. And if you look back to when McCaffrey actually broke the record, he did it in only 388 touches.
Star players move in a certain type of way. Derrick Henry doesn't look particularly fast or graceful, but his raw, violent, churning power is obvious from his first step with the ball. Corey Coleman's ability to stop and immediately redirect his momentum is only made more impressive by his ability to do it with incredible, silky-smooth grace.
But McCaffrey is frenetic, jittery, like the time when you were 24 and drank two military-grade energy drinks before going out on a Saturday night and ended up laying in bed until 9:30 am desperately trying not to have a heart attack. Not that anyone here has ever done that.
If we hadn't seen McCaffrey do this kind of thing all season, I would've sworn a vengeful ghost occupied his body on Saturday night. That monster can finally rest, fully comforted by the knowledge that the flames of USC's demise were visible from space.