Bernard Pierce -- 2011 -- Junior Season

Temple RB Bernard Pierce is having a record-breaking season as a junior in 2011.

In the season opener against Villanova, Pierce recorded the 10th 100-yard performance of his career.  He finished with 20 carries for 147 yards and three touchdowns. His three rushing TDs tied his career high. Pierce became just the third player in Temple history to record 10 games of 100 yards rushing. He earned the season’s first Mid-American Conference Offensive Player of the Week honors for the East division on Sept. 5.

In the win at Akron, Pierce did it again— rushing for 150 yards on 18 carries for a career-high three TDs for the 11th 100-yard rushing performance of his career.

Against Penn State, Pierce led the Owls with 50 yards and a touchdown on 17 carries.

Pierce had a record-breaking day in the win at Maryland.  The junior rushed for a school record and MAC record-tying five touchdowns en route to a school record 30 points in a game.  He finished with 149 yards for his 12th career 100-yard rushing performance. 

Against Toledo, Pierce led the Owls with 75 yards on 24 carries..

In the 34-0 shutout win over Buffalo, Pierce broke five school records. Pierce eclipsed the 100-yard mark in rushing for the 14th time in his career and fifth time this season.  

At Bowling Green, Pierce surpassed Paul Palmer in career scoring with his lone TD on the day. He finished with 107 yards on 17 carries, his 15th career 100-yard day (fifth this season).

At Ohio, Pierce scored TU’s lone rushing TD with a 20-yard run in the third quarter. He finished with 84 yards on 22 carries.

Pierce missed the Miami game with an injury.

In the win over Army, Pierce finished with 157 yards and three touchdowns on 21 carries, helping Temple to a season-high five rushing touchdowns. With five rushing TDs in the game, Temple set the school record for rushing touchdowns in a season.

In the win over Kent State, Pierce added another 100-yard rushing performance to his resume. He finished with a season-best 189 yards and three touchdowns on 24 carries, including a career-long 69-yard TD run.

In the bowl win over Wyoming, the last game of Pierce’s collegiate career, Pierce rushed for 100 yards and two touchdowns on 25 carries.

In 12 games, Pierce led the Owls (and the MAC) with 1,481 yards and a school record 27 touchdowns on 273 carries. He finished as the Owls’ and MAC’s top scorer with a school record 162 points. Pierce finished No. 2 nationally with 13.50 points per game, No. 2 in rushing TDs (27), and No. 6 in rushing (123.42).

Game Records

Rushing Touchdowns
5    Bernard Pierce at Maryland (2011)

Points Scored
30    Bernard Pierce at Maryland (2011); tied Sherman Myers vs. Syracuse (1979)

Two 100-Yard Rushers (4X)
121    Bernard Pierce; 114, Matt Brown; at Ball State (2011)

152    Bernard Pierce; 120, Matt Brown; vs. Buffalo (2011)

107   Bernard Pierce; 119, Matt Brown; at Bowling Green (2011)

157   Bernard Pierce; 133, Matt Brown; vs. Army (2011)

MAC Record
Rushing Touchdowns in a Game
5    Bernard Pierce at Maryland (2011); (tied 10 other players)


Season Records

Rushing Touchdowns
27   Bernard Pierce (2011)   

Total Touchdowns [rushing+receiving]
27    Bernard Pierce (2011)   

162   Bernard Pierce (2011)  

100-Yard Rushing Games
9   (tie) Bernard Pierce (2011) 

Career Records

Rushing Touchdowns
53    Bernard Pierce (2009-present)

Total Touchdowns [rushing+receiving]
54    Bernard Pierce (2009-present) (53+1)

324    Bernard Pierce (2009-present)



Career Record Watch

Rushing Yardage
1. Paul Palmer (1983-86) 4,895
2. Bernard Pierce (2009-) 3,570

100-Yard Rushing Games
1. Paul Palmer (1983-86) 21
2. Bernard Pierce (2009-) 18

200-Yard Rushing Games
1. Paul Palmer (1983-86) 6
3. Bernard Pierce (2009-) 2

Rushing Touchdowns
1. Bernard Pierce (2009-) 53
2. Paul Palmer (1983-86) 39

Total Touchdowns [Rushing + Receiving]
1. Bernard Pierce (2009-) [53+1]  54
2. Paul Palmer (1983-86) [39+4]  43

Career Scoring
1. Bernard Pierce (2009-) 324
    Paul Palmer (1983-86) 264


Bernard Pierce vs. The Nation -- 2009 -- Freshman Season

Temple RB Bernard Pierce worked his way into the starting line-up and into the records books as a true freshman in 2009.

In 12 games, Temple’s all-time freshman rusher led all Owl and MAC rushers with freshman records of 1,361 yards and 16 touchdowns on 236 carries. He averaged 113.42 yards per game.

Ranked among the nation’s Top 3 rushers (the top freshman rusher) until his injury, Pierce finished the season ranked No. 15 nationally in rushing and No. 4 nationally in rushing by a freshman.

Top 10 FBS Freshman Rushers

  Player School Season Yards TDs 100-yd Games
1. Adrian Peterson Oklahoma 2004 1,925 15 11
2. Ron Dayne * Wisconsin 1996 1,863 21 7
3. Jamario Thomas North Texas 2004 1,801 17 3
4. Dion Lewis Pittsburgh 2009 1,799 17 10
5. Chance Kretschmer Nevada 2001 1,732 15 8
6. Herschel Walker Georgia 1980 1,616 15 7
7. Tony Dorsett Pittsburgh 1973 1,586 13 10
8. P.J. Hill Wisconsin 2006 1,569 15 8
9. Alex Smith Indiana 1994 1,475 10 6
10. Anthony Davis Wisconsin 2001 1,466 11 10
  Bernard Pierce Temple 2009 1,361 16 6

* NCAA’s all-time rusher

current NCAA Statistics

Bernard Pierce vs. Paul Palmer

During his freshman campaign, Bernard Pierce was compared to Temple’s all-time rusher Paul Palmer (1983-86), the 1986 Heisman Trophy runner-up.

In 2009, Bernard Pierce became the first Temple freshman to record multiple games of more than 100 yards rushing since the Owls began Division I-A competition in 1971.

Bernard Pierce finished his freshman campaign with six 100-yard rushing games, including two 200-yard games.

Paul Palmer recorded the most 100-plus yard games in school history with 21, but only had one as a freshman. The second all-time leading rusher Tanardo Sharps (1999-02) had 15 games of 100-plus yards but only one as a freshman.

Pierce surpassed two of Palmer’s freshman records in just eight games.

In addition to re-writing the freshman marks, Pierce scored the most touchdowns in a season with 16.

Rushing Yards by a Freshman
1. Bernard Pierce (2009) 1,361
2. Paul Palmer (1983) 628

Rushing Attempts by a Freshman
1. Bernard Pierce (2009) 236
2. Paul Palmer (1983) 141

Rushing Touchdowns by a Freshman
1. Bernard Pierce (2009) 16
2. Paul Palmer (1983) 6

100-Yard Games by a Freshman
1. Bernard Pierce (2009) 6
2. Paul Palmer (1983) 1