It has never been a secret that the Pony Express rewrote the record books when it came to running the football, but this potent offensive machine was capable of scoring through the air just as easily as it could on the ground. Against North Texas in 1982, Craig James scored on a 96-yard TD reception to set a new record as the longest scoring play in Southwest Conference history. James' record breaking catch and run breaks in at No. 82 in our countdown of the 90 Greatest Moments in SMU Football History.
With injured quarterback Lance McIlhenny on the sideline, back-up Jeff Courtwright led SMU to a 38-10 non-conference victory over North Texas State. NTSU became the first of many teams that season who attempted to stack the line of scrimmage with eight and nine men to stop the Pony Express rushing attack. Courtwright responded by going to the air. On the second play of the game, Courtwright hit James who evaded NTSU defenders on his way to a record setting 96-yard touchdown.
James shined for the Ponies during the 1982 season, showing his versatility as a football player. He was the leading punter in the SWC with a 44.9 average and finished sixth in the NCAA. That same year, James became the first player since Rice's Billy Howton in 1951 to be named All-SWC at two positions, running back and punter. His record setting reception places Mr. Versatile, Craig James, at No. 82 as we countdown the 90 Greatest Moments in SMU Football History.