The Oklahoma State football program will wear 1987 throwback uniforms this Saturday against West Virginia in honor of former running back Thurman Thomas, who will become the first player inducted into the Cowboys’ ring of honor at halftime.
Thomas, whose No. 34 will be unveiled atop the west end zone of Boone Pickens Stadium, rushed for a school record 5,001 yards and 50 touchdowns during his four seasons at Oklahoma State (1984-87). He was a three-time All-American, two-time Big Eight Offensive Player of the Year and helped the Cowboys to the first 10-win season in program history as a freshman.
“I feel very honored that I’m one of the guys who elevated the program,” Thomas said earlier this week. “That’s what you want to do. Any football player coming out of high school is going to a college trying to elevate that program. I just happened to be on that first team that got 10 wins and kind of carried it for the next three years.”
The all-white uniforms are a callback to what Oklahoma State wore in the 1987 Sun Bowl victory over the Mountaineers, Thomas’ final game with the Cowboys, when he rushed for 157 yards and four touchdowns in the 35-33 win and was named the game’s most valuable player.
They’re essentially the road version of the 1988 throwback uniforms worn by Oklahoma State in 2018 as a nod to former running back Barry Sanders, with the old-school “bubble” logo on both sides, Northwestern stripes on the sleeves and a traditional block font.
The jersey features “Oklahoma State” across the chest, while the pants include an orange belt and a thick orange stripe sandwiched between two thin black stripes down the sides. Sadly, the two massive Sun Bowl patches seen in the photo above have been replaced with television numbers.
After that game, Thomas was selected by the Buffalo Bills in the second round of the 1988 NFL Draft. He led the Bills to four straight Super Bowl appearances (XXV-XXVIII) and was named the league’s most valuable player in 1991.
A five-time Pro Bowler, Thomas finished his 13-year professional career with 12,074 yards and 65 touchdowns. His number was retired by Buffalo in 2005 and he was inducted into the pro and college football halls of fame in 2007 and 2008, respectively.
As mentioned, Oklahoma State will celebrate Thomas’ career at halftime of Saturday’s game against West Virginia. Kickoff is scheduled for 3:30 p.m. ET on ABC.
“I want it to end with a win, that’s all I care about,” Thomas said. “It’s going to be special to see it and my family and I are really looking forward to it.”
Photos courtesy of @CowboyFB on Twitter.