Greatest Cowboys By Their Jersey Numbers: #30

Part of the Greatest Players by Number Series

Jersey #30

Ten players have worn #30, including five defensive backs, three running backs, a kicker, and one linebacker/fullback.

Mike Dowdle, RB/LB, Texas, 1960-62

Statistics: Dowdle recorded two interceptions with the Cowboys as a linebacker.

Accolades: None.

Longevity: He lasted three seasons with the Cowboys.

Intangibles:Dowdle was drafted by San Francisco but released before the season started. After Dallas picked him up, he played as a backup fullback in 1960. He moved to linebacker in 1961 and started several games there.

Lance Frazier, CB, West Virgina, 2004

Statistics: Frazier had two interceptions for the Cowboys.

Accolades: None.

Longevity: He lasted one season in Dallas.

Intangibles: Dallas picked up Frazier after he was released by Baltimore in 2004. He now plays in the Canadian Football League.

Issiac Holt, CB, Alcorn State, 1989-92

Statistics: Holt had nine interceptions with the Cowboys and ran two of those back for touchdowns.

Accolades: None with Dallas.

Longevity: Holt played four seasons in Dallas.

Intangibles: He was part of the Herschel Walker trade and was probably the best player of those acquired. He made some big plays and held on to his starting job until Kevin Smith took over in 1992.

Timmy Newsome, RB, Winston-Salem, 1980-88

Statistics: Newsome rushed for 1226 yards and scored 19 touchdowns for the Cowboys.

Accolades: None.

Longevity: He played nine seasons with Dallas.

Intangibles: Newsome was a quality fullback, though perhaps not remembered quite as fondly as others, such as Walt Garrison or Robert Newhouse. He was a good back coming out of the backfield.

Dan Reeves, RB, South Carolina, 1965-72

Statistics: Reeves rushed for 1990 yards and scored 25 touchdowns in Dallas.

Accolades: None.

Longevity: He played eight seasons in Dallas before becoming a full-time coach.

Intangibles: Reeves was a multi-talented player. In 1966, he caught 41 passes for 557 yards and scored eight touchdowns through the air. By the end of his career, he was overshadowed on the field by the likes of Duane Thomas and Calvin Hill. By that time, he served as a player-coach.

Darren Studstill, S, West Virginia, 1994

Statistics: Studstill recorded no stats.

Accolades: None.

Longevity: He played in one game for Dallas in 1994.

Intangibles: Studstill was on the inactive list for most of his one season with the Cowboys. He played two more years with Jacksonville.

Dick Van Raaphorst, K, Ohio State, 1964

Statistics: He made 14 of 29 field goal attempts for the Cowboys.

Accolades: None with Dallas.

Longevity: He lasted just one season in Dallas.

Intangibles: With a low success rate on field goals, he was replaced in 1965 by Danny Villanueva. He later became a Pro Bowl kicker with the Chargers.

Bryant Westbrook, CB, Texas, 2002

Statistics: Westbrook did not record any stats worth noting.

Accolades: None with Dallas.

Longevity: He lasted one game in 2002.

Intangibles: Westbrook, a former first-round pick in 1997 by Detroit, was the fall guy when the Cowboys lost to the Houston Texans to start the 2002 season, thanks to his poor coverage during the game. He finished the season with the Packers but never played again.

Kenny Wheaton, CB, Oregon, 1997-99

Statistics: Wheaton recorded one interception with the Cowboys.

Accolades: None.

Longevity: He lasted parts of three seasons with Dallas.

Intangibles: A former third-round pick, Wheaton saw quite a bit of action in 1998, but he lacked much talent. He played in only five games in 1999. He moved on to play in the Arena Football League and now plays in Canada.

Charles Young, RB, North Carolina State, 1974-76

Statistics: Young rushed for 638 yards with the Cowboys.

Accolades: None.

Longevity: He lasted three seasons in Dallas.

Intangibles: Young alternated between fullback and tailback and saw quite a bit of action during his three seasons with the team. He lost favor with Tom Landry in 1976, though, after dropping two key passes against the Cardinals, and he missed all of the 1977 season with an injury. He never played again.


Here are the results of the poll for this number:

Greatest #30

  • Dan Reeves (76%, 99 Votes)
  • Timmy Newsome (18%, 24 Votes)
  • Issiac Holt (3%, 4 Votes)
  • Darren Studstill (1%, 1 Votes)
  • Kenny Wheaton (1%, 1 Votes)
  • Bryant Westbrook (1%, 1 Votes)
  • Dick Van Raaphorst (0%, 0 Votes)
  • Mike Dowdle (0%, 0 Votes)
  • Lance Frazier (0%, 0 Votes)
  • Charles Young (0%, 0 Votes)

Total Voters: 130

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If you still want to vote, please make a comment below.

My Vote: Newsome

I am going to go with Newsome here thanks to longevity. He was a pretty good blocker but better remembered as a receiver out of the backfield. I can’t seem to find a picture of him, but here is a video that I posted several months ago:

Note: Please read the comments to this post for more on Reeves, who is probably the better pick here.

  • Tim Truemper

    Dan Reeves led Dallas in rushing in 1966, one of the few times between 1961 and 1968 that Don Perkins did not. Another accolade was that he made the Sporting News first team all-pro and was 2nd team all pro for AP, both in 1966.

    His knee injury in early 1968 did him in. He played some 3rd down back in 1969 and 1970 and later migrated over to b/u QB and kickholder for 1971 and 1972. I believe that occurred while he was a player coach. I remember in 1971 him stepping in as a QB-his former position in college–in mop up action against the Eagles.

  • Tim Truemper

    This is a second post on Dan Reeves. Another “accolade” was that Reeves led the NFL in touchdowns scored–16–with 8 rushing and 8 receiving.

  • Great points, Tim. For the first time in this series, I am second-guessing my pick.

  • Fred Goodwin

    I also went with Reeves — he was a great weapon on the HB-option and Landry used it to perfection in the Ice Bowl game (Reeves to Rentzel for the go-ahead TD).

    I believe Reeves was a QB at South Carolina, which made him a “brainy” type of runner, not the slasher that Perkins was or the “glider” that Duane Thomas was.

    Reeves also mentioned that he was scratched in the eye late in the ’66 NFL Championship game, which led to him bobbling a pass near the end-zone that might’ve changed the game against the Packers. He said later that he should’ve taken himself out of the game, but didn’t.

    There were so many screw-ups on that final drive (Boeke jumping offsides, having Hayes in at TE instead of Clarke, etc.) that its hard for me to lay the blame on Reeves for the Cowboys failing to win that game.

    I can’t recall Newsome ever being in a similar critical situation but I could be mistaken.

  • Quite fair to say that I blew it on this one. Reeves always seemed to be better recognized thanks to his position as player-coach and obviously for his head coaching career. But I should have thought this one through a little bit better.

    To be fair, Newsome is a player who gave many years to the Cowboys but who is largely forgotten. Nonetheless, this pick should have gone to Reeves.

  • Tim Truemper

    Thanks for the responses and feedback. In kickholder’s defense, Timmy Newsome had some wonderful moments (like your video showed)and was intermittently valuable. I kept waiting for him to break loose and be a force, but it did not happen.

    Fred is right in his posts on Reeves with the ex college QB thing plus the 1966 championship game. And Landry treated Reeves with the HB option like what he did with Gifford with the NY Giants. What a turn of events on the championship game with all the errors. It was that very game and all its drama that made me a real Cowboy fan. If anybody knows of any video replay…?

  • Fred Goodwin

    kickholder: I wasn’t trying to criticize your pick, just explaining my own.

    All of these are subjective after all, and its sometimes hard to remember what the older Cowboys did, especially with the media attention given to even the slightest news by the newer Cowboys.

    Newsome was good while he was here, certainly good enough to eventually replace Ron Springs as the third-down back.

  • Tim Truemper

    Sorry for any misunderstanding. I didn’t feel criticized. I was trying to show how Newsome made sense as a pick. I actually was leaning toward him as well.

    It is hard to remember much about the players from the 60’s. It was what I was raised on as a young fan. They were heady days for sure.

    I really enjoy the website. I learn something knew on a regular basis. And the links to other sites including those with video are great.

    I am having trouble loading the Silver and Blue site that has vintage video. If anyone knows if there is a problem…?

  • Fred Goodwin

    Something tells me his ISP probably told him to take down any copyrighted material — I haven’t been able to access it, either.

  • Tim Truemper

    Thanks for the info Fred–that’s too bad. Probably NFL Films caught on to him.