Former Texas A&M star RB Darren Lewis dies at 55

League: NCAA Football

Posted on: 21 Jun, 2024 at 08:43 PM

Credit: Jerome Miron-USA TODAY Sports

Former Texas A&M running back Darren Lewis, best known for breaking Eric Dickerson's Southwest Conference rushing record, died on Thursday following a battle with cancer. He was 55.

Texas A&M announced the passing of Lewis, who was a two-time All-American and the school's all-time leading rusher.

Nicknamed "Tank" for his bruising rushing style, Lewis rushed for 5,012 yards from 1987-90 to surpass Dickerson's total of 4,450 at SMU (1979-82). Rice's Trevor Cobb threatened Lewis' mark before finishing with 4,948 yards from 1989-92.

Lewis tested positive for cocaine at the NFL scouting combine and saw his draft stock plummet. He was selected by the Chicago Bears in the sixth round of the 1991 NFL Draft. He rushed for 431 yards and four touchdowns in 33 career games over three seasons with the Bears.

Lewis struggled with addiction and was arrested multiple times before ending up in prison on robbery charges. He was released in 2010 but found himself in trouble again in 2014, as he was sentenced to 27 years in prison for a run of armed robberies in the Dallas area.

"I was selfish. I just wanted what Darren Lewis wanted and I didn't think about the people I may be hurting," Lewis told the Bryan-College Station Eagle last week. "It was all about what I wanted at that time."

Lewis was allowed to leave prison to receive treatment for Stage 4A metastatic squamous cell carcinoma. He recently entered hospice care.

--Field Level Media