Greatest Running Backs All-Time in the CFL

Previously I asked about your top three all-time wide receivers in the CFL, and now I'm going to ask for your opinions on the top three all-time running backs. I know that with only 3 downs to make a first down versus 4 downs in the NFL, this puts a premium on passing and mobile quarterbacks in the CFL, but I know there are several all-time great running backs even so.
In the NFL, the all-time rushing leader is Emmitt Smith of the Dallas Cowboys and Arizona Cardinals, second would be Walter Payton of the Chicago Bears, and third Barry Sanders of the Detroit Lions. In my opinion the greatest running back in the NFL would be Jim Brown of the Cleveland Browns because he played in the NFL for 10 years and led the league in rushing for all 10 years he played, and then he retired. Not a bad record, 10 years 10 rushing titles.
In the CFL, I came up with two all-time great running backs, and they would be George Reed of the Saskatchewan Roughriders, and Leo Lewis of the Winnipeg Blue bombers. I'd like to hear your opinions on your top three running backs of all-time in the CFL.


Reggie Barnes - ottawa
Richard Crump - winnipeg
tony cherry - bc

Recently retired Mike Priingle is the all time leading rusher in CFL history with 16,425 yards, including 2065 yards in 1998 with Montreal. The guy in his prime was almost unstoppable, he would run over or through the defense regularly. It usually took 2 or 3 guys to bring him down. Although at the start of his career he had 4.35 speed and would run around pepole too. His hero growing up was Walter Payton. He wore number 27 in Montreal but switched to 34 because both Payton and Reed wore 34.
You will get an argument from George Reed fans (whom Pringle passed as the all time leading rusher).
So many possibilities for number 3! I don't know who I would pick.

Willie Fleming, George Reed, Leo Lewis are good ones to start with!!

Check this out from today's Montreal Gazette

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best RB in NFL history was Barry Sanders...9 years, 16,000 yards rushing. would've broke the record, but didnt want to. he wouldve been at least a 20 K rusher

Willard Reeves was my fav, too bad he didnt stick around longer, ended up with the Skins I believe.


George Reed is Legend …nuff said

hmmmmmmmmmm George Reed and Mike Pringell are a toss up.........played in different era's so hard to compare...................and in third...................hmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm Willie Flemming I would have to say.........................

Leo Lewis......probably the best all around back this league has ever seen...he could run like Charles Roberts.....catch like Milt Stegall....and throw like a QB...with accuracy down field off a designed play....look up his records ...they speak for themselves...

George Reed......alot of people will compare Pringle to Reed ....but as far as brute force and powerful runner Reed would have to get the edge....a few linebackers made the mistake of trying to tackle Reed with one arm tackles and a couple of them ended up with broken arms...powerful man....and tough to bring down...

Willy Fleming.......what moves this guy had....he wasn't a small running back but could he fly ... Willy the Wisp.....was is nickname..good receiver as well...if you didn't sure tackle him first try ...say goodbye....

any one of these guys could have made it in the Leo Lewis' case ...this was confirmed by Bud Grant who said Leo could have played for any team in the states but was just happy playing in Canada....where are these type of guys now....

OKay, The Best Running Back Of All Time Had To Be Campbell, He Played With The Oilers In The Late 70s Early 80s. He Is Such An Amazing Back And Would Distory Anyone In His Way. I Have A Clip Of One Off His Games Against Denver Where He Gets A Handoff, Takes One Step Forward, Then Another Over Top Of A Fallen D-Lineman, Then The Third Step As He Puts His Head Into An Awaiting Line Backer And You Can Just See The Shock Waves Going Through The Defender. It Looks The Same As The National Geographic Speacials Where The Two Rams Headbutt Each Other. The Kinda Hit That Makes You Want To Put Your Hand Through A Concrete Block.

The Best CFL Running Back Would Have To Be Lyle 'Big Train' Cunningham. Unfortuately I Don't Have Any Great Clips Of Him For Obvious Reasons. He Was The First Breakout Back In The History Of The Game And After His Career Was Finished Would Be Named The Athlete Of The Half Centrey

I'd say the best CFL running back of all time is Cory Philpot

I say you can't deny Pringle, who rushed for more yards than anyone else, and is still the only one to rush for 2,000+ in a season, the title of all-time best.

But Montreal, where Pringle played most of his career, was at the time primarily a running team. George Reed, who held the record for around thirty years, set that record while playing for a team that also had the league's all-time leading passer. These would be the top two.

Third is a harder pick. But consider Winnipeg's Willard Reaves, and Hamilton's Jimmy Edwards and Troy Davis as possible candidates.