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Ken Darby needs only 1,076 yards to tie Shaun Alexander on top of Alabama’s all-time rushing yards list.
DAILY File Photo Dan Henry
Ken Darby needs only 1,076 yards to tie Shaun Alexander on top of Alabama’s all-time rushing yards list.

‘I know I
will get it’

Confident Darby aims for Bama’s career rushing mark

By Kyle Veazey
DAILY Sports Writer

kveazey@decaturdaily.com · 340-2460

TUSCALOOSA — The question is asked, and Ken Darby smiles, then gets all serious. Just enough for you not to believe what he's about to say.

"I try not to pay too much attention to it," he said, asked about the Alabama career rushing record from which he stands 1,076 yards.

Really, Ken?

"It's something I know is reachable," he said.

Closer.

"I know I can get it," he said.

Closer.

"I know I will get it," he said.

There it is. Typical Darby optimism, characteristic Darby confidence. And why not?

There's no reason to think that when football season begins in fewer than two months Darby, should he remain healthy, won't collect enough yards to surpass current NFL star Shaun Alexander atop one of the school's more prestigious individual lists.

Darby, at 2,489 yards, would eclipse Alexander's total if he equals, or even comes close to, his 2005 total of 1,242 yards.

He'd even come close if he equaled his output of 2004 (1,062 yards). That was the season in which his final games were a blur of pain from a yet-to-be-diagnosed sports hernia.

It's good company, too, that UA career rushers list. Second to Alexander is Bobby Humphrey and third is Johnny Musso. He's already passed Sherman Williams and Shaud Williams.

The only hurdle was the return of the Butler High grad, who flirted with the possibility of turning professional when his junior year came to a close at last year's Cotton Bowl.

"I knew I was going to come back," Darby said. "I had unfinished business to take care of when I came back, and one of them was to beat Auburn."

The record figures to be in reach, too, because Alabama's perceived offensive strength this season will be its rushing game as it breaks new starting quarterback John Parker Wilson.

Questions abound about the offensive line, though. Senior right tackle Kyle Tatum swears those questions are being answered, part of a four-day-a-week stretch of summer film watching and work.

"We're going to be a part of it, and we're going to pave the way for him to get there," Tatum said. "He's got some moves that you really can't teach."

UA career rushing list

Player (years playing) Yards
 
Shaun Alexander (1996-99) 3,565
 
Bobby Humphrey (1985-88) 3,420
 
Johnny Musso (1969-71) 2,741
 
Dennis Riddle (1994-97) 2,645
 
Bobby Marlow (1950-52) 2,560
 
Johnny Davis (1974-77) 2,519
 
Ken Darby (2003-current) 2,489
 
Sherman Williams (1991-94) 2,486
 
Shaud Williams (2002-03) 2,288
 
Ricky Moore (1981-84) 2,270

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