Marion Barber Biography, Early life, Personal Life, Career and Death
Marion Sylvester Barber III (June 10, 1983 – June 1, 2022) was an American professional football running back in the National Football League (NFL)for seven seasons. He was picked in the fourth round of the 2005 NFL Draft by the Dallas Cowboys after playing college football for the Minnesota Golden Gophers. During his six-year career with the Cowboys, he was named to the Pro Bowl in 2007. In 2011, he was a member of the Chicago Bears.
“Dominique Barber”Former Houston Texans safety and Minnesota Golden Gophers linebacker Thomas Barber were his older brothers, and he was the son of former New York Jets running back Marion Barber Jr. He was also Peyton Barber’s cousin.
Following an incident in 2014, Barber was held by police and given a mental examination.
Barber was charged with two counts of criminal mischief in 2019 after causing damage to two cars while on the run. In April 2022, he entered a no contest plea and was sentenced to a year of probation, 60 hours of community service, and a $2,000 fine.
Barber was a standout athlete at Wayzata High School in Plymouth, Minnesota, where he excelled in football, baseball, and track. As a senior running back and defensive back, he was a SuperPrep and PrepStar All-Midwest and consensus All-State selection in football. Barber rushed for 1,778 yards and 18 touchdowns in his final season with the Trojans, while also leading the team with 10 interceptions (three of which came against Gatorade National Player of the Year and future Minnesota Twins catcher Joe Mauer). He earned an Honorable Mention All-Conference center fielder in baseball. Barber qualified for the Minnesota State Class AA Championships in the 100 meters in his first and only track season. He finished the season with a time of 10.9 seconds in the 100m dash.
Barber, like his father, attended the University of Minnesota and was a member of the Minnesota Golden Gophers football team. Coaches wanted him to play safety at first, but after seeing him run, they decided to keep him at running back, where he ranks fourth all-time in rushing yards with 3,276 yards, second in all-purpose yards with 4,495 yards, and second in rushing touchdowns with 35, one more than his father, Marion Barber Jr. He also paired up with running back Laurence Maroney in his sophomore year to form one of the best running back tandems in college football, becoming the only teammates in Division I (NCAA) history to both rush for 1,000 yards in consecutive seasons. In 2003, he was named to the Big Ten Conference’s All-Academic Team.
Barber was drafted in the fourth round of the 2005 NFL Draft, with the 109th overall pick, after foregoing his final year of college.  He was at the bottom of the depth chart due to a toe infection that necessitated surgery and multiple preseason fumbles. Due to Julius Jones’ injury and Anthony Thomas’ ineffectiveness, Barber was able to shine, rushing for 95 yards against Seattle and 127 yards against Arizona. This, combined with his pass-blocking and special team’s ability, cemented his role as the Cowboys’ backup running back.Barber carved a niche as a third-down rusher and game closer in 2006, establishing himself as a great red-zone rushing back while being Julius Jones’ backup. In 2006, he led the NFC with 14 rushing touchdowns and was the first non-placekicker to lead the Cowboys in scoring since 2000. (96 points). He also showed off his power back skills, earning a reputation for hammering defenders.
Barber’s power running back approach earned him the moniker Marion the Barbarian, and he led the league in breaking tackles during the 2007 season, mirroring his personal mantra of “hit or get hit.” Barber carried for 975 yards and 10 rushing touchdowns on 204 carries, averaging 4.8 yards per carry. He caught 44 passes for 282 yards and two touchdowns.
Despite being a backup, he was named to his first Pro Bowl on December 18, 2007.  Barber started the divisional playoff game against the New York Giants.
Barber was a restricted free agent in 2008, and Dallas offered him the highest tender as a starter. He signed a seven-year, $45 million contract with the Cowboys on May 20, 2008, with $16 million guaranteed. Prior to becoming a starter, there was concern that his rushing style might limit his career; with the added work, his career longevity was debated more frequently, as his yards per carry began to decline.In 2009, the rise of Tashard Choice and Felix Jones, as well as physical issues, restricted his success. Despite a torn quadriceps muscle, he played in 15 games. Barber had a poor 2010 season, as the Cowboys as a whole struggled from the first game. Barber carried for 374 yards on 113 carries in 13 games, his lowest rushing average of his career at 3.3 yards per carry. He also had the fewest rushing touchdowns of his career with four.
Chicago Bears 2011
On July 28, 2011, Dallas released Barber. Barber signed a two-year, $5 million contract with the Chicago Bears on July 30, 2011. After Matt Forte, Barber beat over Chester Taylor for the second-string running back job with the Chicago Bears. Barber injured his calf muscle in the third preseason game on August 27 and missed the first three games of the regular season as a result. Barber scored a touchdown and had his first 100-yard game since 2009 after suffering a muscle injury in Week 14 against the Denver Broncos, replacing an injured Forte. Barber rushed for 422 yards on 114 carries in 2011. Barber announced his retirement from the NFL on March 23, 2012, after the 2011 season. 
On June 1, 2022, Barber was discovered dead in his Frisco, Texas, residence.  He was 38 years old at the time.