Bo Jackson: A Career Cut Short


Vince Edward “Bo” Jackson was born on November 30th, 1962, and was the eighth out of ten siblings of the Jackson family. Despite his troubled behavior growing up, Jackson attended McCalla High School. As a senior, he rushed for 1,175 yards for the football team, and then managed to hammer 20 home runs for the baseball team.

In the month of June in 1982, the New York Yankees had chosen Jackson in the second round of the MLB Draft, but instead of going straight out of high school to the Major Leagues, Jackson decided to go to Auburn University on a football scholarship.

While he was attending Auburn, Bo Jackson rushed for 4,303 rushing yards in four seasons. He ended up missing most of his senior baseball season after being pronounced ineligible by the NCAA after visiting with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.

As every football fanatic knows, Jackson’s multi-sport career was cut short due to a career-ending hip injury.

Some think of Jackson as the greatest athlete of his time, while others view him as a freak of human nature. In result, he became both over time. Bo Jackson excelled at both football and baseball, which put him on sport maps all over the world.

Jackson was most known for his time in the NFL as the starting running back for the Oakland (formerly Los Angeles) Raiders, as he proved to be one of the best backs in franchise history. In his four short seasons, Jackson accumulated 2,782 rushing yards and 16 rushing touchdowns on a total of 515 carries.

Jackson had the combination of strength and speed that made him one of the most talked-about athletes in the league.

After Jackson’s hip injury, he found a new sport to play, and that was Major League Baseball. He had a five-year tenure with the Kansas City Royals, a three-year career with the Chicago White Sox, and a one-year stint with the California (now Los Angeles) Angels. In Jackson’s nine-year MLB career, he posted 141 home runs and 415 RBI.

In fact, Jackson has been the only athlete named to an All-Star team in professional football and baseball.

If it wasn’t for his injury, Jackson could have gone on to emerge as the greatest running back of all time. While some may argue that Jackson is still considered one of the greatest players of all time, he certainly isn’t the greatest.

It seems Jackson was just on the rise of his NFL career when it all came toppling down on top of him. He was inducted into the College Football Hall of Fame in 1996, while Auburn also had #34 retired in 1992, in honor of Bo Jackson’s incredible career as a Tiger.


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