Honors & Awards

  • Drafted in 1st Round by the Kansas City Chiefs
  • 1971 First-Team All-American (Time Magazine)
  • 1971 Third-Team All-American (AP, UPI)
  • 1971 Academic All-American
  • 1971 First-Team All-Big 8 (AP, UPI)
  • 1971 Nebraska Player-of-the-Week (Oregon, Kansas, Oklahoma)
  • 1970 Nebraska Player-of-the-Week (Minnesota)
  • 1969 Big 8 Sophomore-of-the-Year (AP)
  • 1969 Honorable Mention All-Big 8 (AP)
  • 1969 Nebraska Player-of-the-Week (Missouri, Kansas, Oklahoma)

1971 (Senior)
A strong senior season propelled Kinney to set the Husker career rushing record with 2,420 yards and Husker career touchdown record with 35. Kinney earned First-Team All-America honors from Time Magazine, an Academic All-American and a First-Team All-Big 8 choice. Kinney’s success made him a first round NFL draft choice of the Kansas City Chiefs.

Kinney returned to his sophomore form from the beginning of the ’71 season. Against Oregon in the season open Kinney ran for 124 yards and one touchdown as he completely overshadowed Duck ace Bobby Moore in a 34-7 Nebraska win. In a 36-0 rout of Missouri Kinney rushed for 88 yards and two more touchdowns to continue his senior dominance.

Kinney’s finest game as a Husker may have come against Oklahoma in the “Game of the Century”. Most people remember Johnny Rodgers electrifying 72-yard punt return, but forget that Kinney carried the Huskers offensively. Kinney ran for a season best 171 yards and four touchdowns.

With Kinney’s help the Husker continued onto the Orange Bowl to meet Alabama. Kinney rushed for 99 yards and one touchdown as the Huskers defeated Alabama 38-6 to win their second straight National Championship.

1970 (Junior)
Split time with Joe Orduna in 1970 and had another great year. One of the nation’s finest backs, Kinney was the No. 2 rusher on the team with 684 yards with a 4.3 yards per carry average. Scored 5 TD’s on the ground and caught 20 passes for 206 yards.

Kinney’s biggest game came in a 54-29 win over IowaState. Kinney rushed for a season best 116 yards and helped the Huskers rush for 342 yards in the game.

1969 (Sophomore)
Flashed to stardom as a sophomore in the most impressive Nebraska debut since Bobby Reynolds in 1950. Led the 1969 Huskers in rushing, scoring and receiving to spark the drive to the Big 8 Title and Sun Bowl Victory. Named Big 8 Sophomore of the Year by the AP. Ranked 3rd in receiving, 7th in rushing, 5th in tandem and 5th in scoring in the Big 8 Conference. Rushed for 590 yards, best since Reynolds, and caught a record 44 passes for 455 yards and two TD’s. Ran for 10 TD’s and wound up with 74 points. In the game against Oklahoma, which wrapped up the co-title, Jeff carried 35 times for 127 yards, scored three TD’s, and passed for another to completely overshadow 1969 Heisman winner Steve Owens.

Before Nebraska (McCook High)
All-State and All-American for Coach Sam Sample. Lettered in football, basketball and track.

Physical Education Major while at Nebraska. Son of Mr. and Mrs. C. V. Kinney.

Year Att. Gain Loss Net Avg. TDs
1969 191 619 29 590 3.0 10
1970 159 699 5 694 4.4 5
1971 242 1,155 19 1,136 4.7 17
Totals 592 2,473 53 2,420 4.1 32