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Dec. 9, 1984 – Eric Dickerson breaks the NFL rushing record

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Eric Dickerson was selected second overall in the 1983 NFL Draft by the St. Louis Rams. An immediate success, he established rookie records for most rushing attempts (390), most rushing yards gained (1,808) and most touchdowns rushing (18), including another two receiving touchdowns. His efforts earned him All-Pro, Pro Bowl, Player of the Year and Rookie of the Year honors.

In his second season, Dickerson continued his onslaught on the NFL record book becoming a member of the 2000 rushing yards club. Twelve times in 1984 he gained more than 100 yards rushing, breaking the record of 100-yard games in a season held by O. J. Simpson. His 2,105 total yards rushing beat Simpson’s 1973 NFL season record of 2,003 yards (Dickerson having reached 2,007 yards after 15 games), but since the NFL expanded the regular season from 14 to 16 games in 1978, Dickerson had the benefit of playing in two additional games. No one has since rushed for more yards in a single NFL season. Dickerson’s 5.6 yards per carry led the Rams to a playoff berth in 1984.

Sept. 8, 1998 – Mark McGwire hist 62nd home run of the year, breaks Roger Maris’ single-season record

Mark McGwire hit a pitch by the Chicago CubsSteve Trachsel over the left field wall for his record-breaking 62nd home run, setting off huge celebrations at Busch Stadium. The fact that the game was against the Cubs meant that Sammy Sosa was able to congratulate McGwire personally on his achievement. Members of Roger Maris’ family were also present at the game. The ball was freely, albeit controversially, given to McGwire in a ceremony on the field by the stadium worker who found it.

McGwire finished the 1998 season with 70 home runs (including five in his last three games), four ahead of Sosa’s 66, a record that was broken three seasons later in 2001 by Barry Bonds with 73.

McGwire was honored with the inaugural Babe Ruth Home Run Award for leading MLB in home runs. Although McGwire had the prestige of the home run record, Sammy Sosa (who had fewer HR but more RBI and stolen bases) won the 1998 NL MVP award, as his contributions helped propel the Cubs to the playoffs (the St. Louis Cardinals in 1998 finished third in the NL Central).

Mar. 15, 1912 – Cy Young announced his retirement from professional baseball after 22 seasons

Cy Young finished his career with 511 wins, a 2.63 ERA and 2803 strikeouts. During his career he had 5 seasons with 30 or more wins and 15 seasons with 20 or more wins. His 511 wins is by far the most career wins by anyone in MLB history as Walter Johnson finished second with 417. He was inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame in 1937. Cy Young died in 1955 and the following year MLB created the Cy Young Award given to the best pitcher in baseball that year.

Feb. 6, 1990 – Brett Hull and his father Bobby Hull, score 50 goals in a season

Brett Hull (St. Louis Blues) and his father Bobby Hull, became the only father-son combination in NHL history to score 50 goals in a season.

Early in the 1960s, Chicago Blackhawks teammates Stan Mikita and Bobby Hull began experimenting with curved blades, noticing that different bends made shots more unpredictable for goaltenders. Mikita led the NHL in scoring four times using a curved blade, while Hull became the third player in NHL history to score 50 goals in 1961–62. It was the first of five times he would reach the milestone.

A record 14 players scored 50 goals in 1992–93. Among them was Teemu Selanne, who scored 76 goals as a rookie, surpassing Bossy’s record for first-year players by 23 goals. Brett Hull scored over 50 goals five times in the 1990s, equaling his father’s totals in the 1960s. As teams shifted their focus to defensive play rather than offensive, scoring rapidly declined in the late 1990s. No player scored 50 in 1998–99, the first time that had happened in 29 years, excluding the lockout shortened 1994–95 NHL season.