98 Days Until The College Football Season Kicks Off
Just 98 more days, 98 MORE DAYS!
I’m already breaking my own rules with this series and were only two days in. While I said I would only write about one to two players, the number 98 really served me up three guys that deserve to be highlighted.
The first being a very forgotten college football star in Devin Gardner. Gardner played for the Michigan Wolverines from 2010 to 2014 as a quarterback and rocked the number 98. It really is such an odd site but whenever I see a random tweet with his picture attached, I immediately recognize who it is.
Gardners number 98 is so iconic to the game and I don’t believe any other quarterback has worn a 90’s number since.
While in Ann Arbor, Gardner posted 6,336 passing yards and 44 passing touchdowns to go with his 916 rushing yards and 24 touchdown.
The NFL mayn’t have worked out for Gardner but, he’ll always be remembered as the athletic gunslinger that wore a nose guards number.
The next up on this list is an absolute college football legend. A hell of a player, a drip master, and a guy that I absolutely fucking fan boyed when I met him. It’s the Hot Rod, Rodrigo Blankenship.
Blankenship kicked for the Georgia Bulldogs from 2016-2019 and started right off the rip in Athens. As a Bulldog, he posted a 100% extra points made going 200 for 200 and made 80 field goals tallying 440 career points for Kirby Smarts squad.
In 2020 at the Walter Camp Football ceremony, Rodrigo was a Walter Camp All American. I was working with NFP Sports at the time and my boss James Thompson invited me to the dinner where there were NFL player, college football players, and big time media members.
While I was in the hotel a few hours beforehand, I got in the elevator to get my tuxedo and before we hit my floor, the elevator stops and a very familiar guy walks in. I looked up from my phone and said “Holy shit, you’re Rodrigo Blankenship!” He responded with “That is me.” I shook my head and said “You’re a legend.”
I got off the elevator and later got a picture with him at the dinner. Honestly, the reason I put him on here was because I wanted to tell that story but Blankenship is a hell of a player for the Colts now and was great with the Bulldogs.
Last is one of the NFLs best defenders of all time. While he may have switched his number from college to the NFL, his intensity and dominance didn’t.
Lawrence Taylor wore number 98 at the University of North Carolina before switching to 56 with the New York Giants.
In Chapel Hill, Taylor was Unanimous All American and was the ACC Defensive Player of the Year. He dominated the ACC and collegiate offensive linemen like no other.
Taylor also had a ton of “old school” drip. He rocked the half cage bucket with taped wrists and no gloves with a huge towel. I wish some of this style could make a return to the game of football today.
Tomorrow only means we are one day closer and get to highlight more awesome collegiate players and forgotten stars of the game.