For more than 20 years, Isaac Bruce's senior season stood as The Greatest Show on Turf in Memphis (then Memphis State) history. In 1993, Bruce made 74 receptions for 1,054 yards and 10 TDs. He was one of 12 receivers in NCAA Division I-A with 1,000 yards that season. In 2016, there were 37.
“I noticed the Tigers never had a receiver go over 1,000 yards so I was like, 'OK, that's going to be one of my goals.' I was going to be the first Tiger to do it.”
Bruce, the 13th of 15 children, committed to Purdue out of high school in 1990. But his SAT scores were too low to let him accept a football scholarship. He enrolled for two years at Santa Monica College, improved his grades and played well enough to land a scholarship to Memphis State after his sophomore year.
He immediately became the favorite target of QB Steve Matthews, who was drafted by the Kansas City Chiefs in the 1994 NFL Draft. Bruce caught 39 passes for 5 TDs, averaging 13.9 yards per reception as a junior. He finished as the school's all-time leading receiver and Memphis retired his No. 83 in 2003. In 2016, Anthony Miller surpassed Bruce's single-season records with 95 catches for 1,434 yards.
“I think Miller is the right guy to shatter the mark and set the new bar.”