Texas Tech Football: 50 Greatest Red Raiders of all time

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No. 1 Zach Thomas (Linebacker 1992-1995)

The greatest player in the history of Texas Tech football is the living personification of what a Red Raider is. For that reason, Pampa, TX native Zach Thomas remains one of the most popular players in the history of Texas Tech football two decades after his collegiate career ended.

The 2015 College Football Hall of Fame inductee was a three-year starter and two-time all-American at Texas Tech. Thomas recorded 130 tackles in 1995 including 20 in one game against Missouri. His 390 career tackles rank 5th best in school history but despite these phenomenal stats, Thomas is a Texas Tech legend because of one singular play.

In 1995, Thomas intercepted a pass against Texas A&M with just 31 seconds to play giving Texas Tech a 14-7 win. The play is one of the two most iconic plays in Texas Tech history (along with Michael Crabtree’s catch vs. Texas in 2008) and will forever keep Thomas relevant in the story of Texas Tech football.

Thomas’ NFL career is the most decorated of any Texas Tech Red Raider. With 7 Pro Bowl selections, 5 first-team All-Pro selections, and the honor of being on the 2000’s all-decade team Zach Thomas has a strong case for induction into the Pro Football Hall of Fame.