Matchup one of the BamaHammer Players Championship is in the books, and like many of Alabama’s victories, it was a dominant one.
As reflected in our updated graphic, John Hannah defeated Robert Stewart 173 votes to 11, sending him to the next round of our tournament to crown the greatest player in Alabama Crimson Tide history.
Wade Division – Wide Receiver vs. Defensive Back
Don Hutson (1932-1934)
Split End – Pine Bluff, AR
6′ 1″, 183 lbs
Career Statistics: College Football Stats were not well kept during this era.
Alabama Head Coach Frank Thomas once referred to Hutson as “The greatest player I’ve ever seen.” Hutson helped lead Alabama to the 1934 national championship with a 6-catch, 165-yard, 2-touchdown performance against Stanford in the Rose Bowl. Hutson was named All-SEC and Consensus All-American in 1934.
Despite playing in an era in which stats were poorly kept, he is widely regarded as one of the greatest wide receivers to set foot on a college football field. He is considered the father of the modern day wide receiver position due to the innovative routes he would run during games. He perfected his craft through long practices. Hutson was once quoted as saying, ”For every pass I caught in a game, I caught a thousand passes in practice.”
Upon his death in 1997, the New York Times referred to him as “Perhaps the best wide receiver in college and professional football history.” He is a member of Alabama All-Century Team, and the Alabama Sports Hall of Fame. He was also an inaugural member of the College Football Hall of Fame in 1951.
Rashad Johnson (2005-2008)
Free Safety – Sulligent, AL
5’11″, 193 lbs
Career Statistics: 215 Tackles, 11 INT’s, 2 TD’s
One reason Rashad Johnson is held in such high regard by the Alabama faithful is how inconspicuously his career began. Johnson graduated high school with no Division 1 scholarship offers. After weighing his options, he ultimately chose life as an uninvited, non-scholarship walk-on running back at Alabama. Despite the nearly insurmountable odds, he ended his career as an All-American safety who helped lead the Crimson Tide to their first undefeated regular season since 1994.
In addition to being named an All-American in 2008, Johnson was named All-SEC in 2007 and 2008. He ranks seventh in Alabama history in career interception yards and is tied for first for most interceptions in a single game, with three. That game – the 2008 LSU game – cemented Rashad Johnson’s place in Alabama history. Johnson intercepted a Jarrett Lee pass in the end zone during overtime to all but guarantee the win and keep alive Alabama’s perfect season.
Which player advances to the next round?
- Rashad Johnson (26%, 25 Votes)
- Don Hutson (74%, 70 Votes)
Total Voters: 95