Alabama Football: ‘Ten Best Tide WRs of All-Time’ proves Tide is WRU

Mandatory Credit: Jeff Blake-USA TODAY Sports
Mandatory Credit: Jeff Blake-USA TODAY Sports /
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AFP photo / David MAXWELL (Photo by DAVID MAXWELL / AFP) (Photo credit should read DAVID MAXWELL/AFP via Getty Images) /

No. 4 – Ozzie Newsome (1974-1977)

By the mid-1970s a potent passing game had been integrated into the Alabama football wishbone offense. The number of passes was still less than standard offenses of the period, but the Tide loved the long ball in the last Bryant championship era.

Long before he became an NFL GM with the Baltimore Ravens, and before he was a tight end for the Cleveland Browns, Ozzie was an Alabama football wide receiver. With only 102 career catches in the wishbone era, Newsome only reaches No. 12 on the Tide’s career receptions list. Yet, the ‘Wizard of Oz’ is No. 5 on the Tide’s career TD reception list.

For added perspective, consider the following comparison. D.J. Hall had 17 TD catches from 194 career receptions. Ozzie had 102 career receptions and 16 TD catches. The difference was the long ball. Newsome is No. 1 in Alabama football history (minimum 100 career receptions) with an average yards-per-catch of 20.3 yards.

Newsome was a consensus All-American in 1977. Ozzie had great college and professional careers. He is a member of the College Football Hall of Fame and the Pro Football Hall of Fame.