Born: Dec. 27, 1986 in Port Arthur, Texas
Jamaal Charles attended Memorial High School in Port Arthur, Texas. During his junior year, he ran for 2,051 yards and 25 touchdowns and was named first-team all-state by the Texas Sports Writers Association and second-team all-state by the Associated Press. The following year, Charles rushed for 2,056 yards and 25 touchdowns and was recognized by the Houston Chronicle as the Area Offensive MVP. He was also named to the 2005 Parade All-America Football Team and played in the 2005 U.S. Army All-American Bowl.
After graduation, Charles attended the University of Texas in Austin. In his freshman season, he rushed 119 times for 878 yards and 11 touchdowns, contributing significantly to the national championship earned by the Longhorns that year. During the 2007 season, Charles rushed for over 1,400 yards, with an average of more than six yards per carry. Against Nebraska, he rushed for 216 yards in the fourth quarter and would have set the all-time record for yards in a quarter had he not asked to be taken out of the game to allow a teammate to get more carries. He ranks fourth in total-rushing yards by a UT player, despite opting out of his senior year at UT to join the 2008 NFL Draft.
Selected in the third round by the Kansas City Chiefs, he saw limited playing time, but still showed promise with a 5.3 yards per carry average. In the 2009 season, Charles was promoted to first string and became the only player in NFL history to rush for 1,100 or more yards in 200 or fewer carries and the only running back in NFL history to average 5.9 yards per carry, run 1,000 yards, and catch 40 balls in a season. In 2010, Charles averaged a phenomenal 6.4 yards per carry with 1467 yards and came close to breaking the all-time yards per carry record in a season. In January of 2010 he rushed for 259 yards against the Denver Broncos and likely would have broken the all time single game rushing record, but he again asked to be taken out of the game to allow a teammate more playing time. He was invited to the 2011 Pro Bowl and named to Pro Football Weekly’s 2010 All-NFL Team.
He is currently the NFL's all-time leader in career yards-per-carry among running backs with 5.5 yards. He was inducted into the Museum of the Gulf Coast, Sports Hall of Fame in 2010.