Barnes from 1967 "Razorback"
|Height||6 ft 4 in (193 cm)|
|Weight||235 lb (107 kg)|
|College||University of Arkansas|
|Career highlights and awards|
Barnes attended the University of Arkansas where he initially hoped to play at the end or linebacker position for the Razorbacks. He ended up as a starter on the offensive line under head coach Frank Broyles. He helped lead the 1968 Arkansas Razorbacks football team to a 10–1, a #6 rating in the AP Poll, and a victory over Georgia in the 1969 Sugar Bowl. Following the victory over favored Georgia in the Sugar Bowl, Barnes said: "I have never been associated with a bunch of boys like this. They've given up more and sacrificed more than any group I've ever seen."
Barnes was a consensus selection at the guard position on the 1968 College Football All-America Team, receiving first-team honors from the Associated Press and Central Press. He was drafted by the Minnesota Vikings in the fifth round (106th overall pick) of the 1969 NFL Draft, but he did not play in the National Football League.
Barnes had polio in the third grade and was in bed for six-and-a-half months. Barnes later recalled that his childhood struggle with polio gave him "an incentive to work a little harder." When he was named to the All-American team in December 1968, the Associated Press story noted: "Jim Barnes looks more like an All-American than a polio victim."
- Harry King (January 2, 1969). "Arkansas Soph Chuck Dicus Steals Sugar Bowl Show, Gets Top Honor". The Tuscaloosa News (AP story). p. 13.
- "2014 NCAA Football Records: Consensus All-America Selections" (PDF). National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA). 2014. p. 6. Retrieved August 23, 2014.
- "Grid Draft". The Sporting News. February 15, 1969. p. 20.
- "Jim Barnes Beat Polio". The Times Herald, Sarasota, Florida (AP story). December 6, 1968. p. 15.