Bo Jackson

Vincent Edward "Bo" Jackson (born November 30, 1962) is a former baseball and American football player. He is the only athlete in history to be named an All-Star in both baseball and football, and one of few to do so in two major sports.[1] He is widely considered one of the greatest athletes of all time. While at Auburn University, Jackson won the 1985 Heisman Trophy, annually awarded to the best collegiate football player in the United States. Jackson was inducted into the College Football Hall of Fame in 1996. Jackson was originally drafted first overall by the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in the 1986 NFL Draft, but refused to play for the franchise. Jackson instead entered the following year's draft, being selected in the seventh round (183rd overall) by the Los Angeles Raiders.

In 1989 and 1990, Jackson's name became known beyond just sports fans through the "Bo Knows" advertising campaign, a series of advertisements by Nike, starring Jackson alongside musician Bo Diddley, promoting a cross-training athletic shoe named for Jackson.[2]

After a 1991 hip injury on the field ended his football career, Jackson focused on baseball, and expanded into other pursuits, including the completion of his Bachelor of Science degree in Family and Child Development at Auburn.[3] In addition, Jackson appeared in small roles as an actor in television shows such as The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air[4] and Married... with Children,[5] as well as films such as The Chamber.

Bo Jackson
refer to caption
Jackson in February 2004
No. 34
Position:Running back
Personal information
Born:November 30, 1962 (age 56)
Bessemer, Alabama
Height:6 ft 1 in (1.85 m)
Weight:227 lb (103 kg)
Career information
High school:McCalla (AL) McAdory
NFL Draft:1986 / Round: 1 / Pick: 1
Career history
Career highlights and awards
Career NFL statistics
Rushing yards:2,782
Yards per carry:5.4
Rushing touchdowns:16
Player stats at
Player stats at PFR
Bo Jackson
Outfielder / Designated hitter
Batted: Right Threw: Right
MLB debut
September 2, 1986, for the Kansas City Royals
Last MLB appearance
August 10, 1994, for the California Angels
MLB statistics
Batting average.250
Home runs141
Runs batted in415
Career highlights and awards

Early life

Jackson, the eighth of ten children, was born on November 30, 1962 and raised in Bessemer, Alabama. He was named after Vince Edwards, his mother's favorite actor. His family described him as a "wild boar hog", as he would constantly get into trouble. He attended school in McCalla, where he rushed for 1,175 yards as a running back as a high school senior. Jackson hit twenty home runs in 25 games for McAdory's baseball team during his senior season. He was a two-time state champion in the decathlon.[6] Both times that he was the decathlon state champion, he built up such a commanding points lead before the 1500 meters that he never competed in that event. "Distance is the only thing I hate about track", he said.[7] In 1982, Jackson set state school records for indoor high jump (6'9") and triple jump (48'8").[8]

College (1982–1986)

In June 1982, Jackson was selected by the New York Yankees in the second round of the 1982 Major League Baseball draft, but he instead chose to attend Auburn University on a football scholarship because he promised his mother he would be the first in the family to go to a major college.[9] He was recruited by head coach Pat Dye and then Auburn assistant coach Bobby Wallace. At Auburn, he proved to be a tremendous athlete in both baseball and football. He shared the backfield with quarterback Randy Campbell, Lionel "Little Train" James and Tommie Agee.

College football

During his time playing for the Auburn Tigers football team, he ran for 4,303 career yards,[10] which was the fourth best performance in SEC history. Jackson finished his career with an average of 6.6 yards per carry, which set the SEC record (minimum 400 rushes).[11]

In 1982, Jackson's freshman year, Auburn played Boston College in the Tangerine Bowl, where Jackson made a one-handed grab on an option pitch. Auburn went on to win the game 33–26 as Jackson rushed 14 times for 64 yards and 2 touchdowns.[12]

In 1983, as a sophomore, Jackson rushed for 1,213 yards (1,109 m) on 158 carries, for an average of 7 yards per carry, which was the 2nd best single-season average in SEC history (minimum 100 rushes). In the 1983 Auburn-Alabama game, Jackson rushed for 256 yards on 20 rushes (12.8 yards per carry), which at the time was the sixth-most rushing yards gained in a game in SEC history and the 2nd best yard-per-rush average in a game (minimum 20 attempts) in SEC history. Auburn finished the season by winning the Sugar Bowl against Michigan, where Jackson was named Most Valuable Player. In 1984, Jackson's junior year (most of which Jackson missed due to injury), he earned Most Valuable Player honors at the Liberty Bowl after defeating Arkansas.[13]

In 1985, Jackson rushed for 1,786 yards which was the second best single-season performance in SEC history. That year, he averaged 6.4 yards per rush, which at the time was the best single-season average in SEC history. For his performance in 1985, Jackson was awarded the Heisman Trophy in what was considered the closest margin of victory ever in the history of the award, winning over University of Iowa quarterback Chuck Long.[10]

Jackson finished his career at Auburn with 4,575 all-purpose yards and 45 total touchdowns, 43 rushing and 2 receiving, with a 6.6 yards per carry average. Jackson's football number 34 was officially retired at Auburn in a halftime ceremony on October 31, 1992. His is one of only three numbers retired at Auburn. The others are 1971 Heisman Trophy winner Pat Sullivan's number 7, and the number 88 of Sullivan's teammate and favorite receiver, Terry Beasley. In 2007, Jackson was ranked #8 on ESPN's Top 25 Players In College Football History list.


Rushing Receiving
Year Att Yds Avg Lng TD No. Yds Avg TD
1982 127 829 6.5 53 9 5 64 12.8 0
1983 158 1,213 7.7 80 12 13 73 5.6 2
1984 87 475 5.5 53 5 4 62 15.5 0
1985 278 1,786 6.4 76 17 4 73 18.3 0
Totals 650 4,303 6.6 80 43 26 272 10.5 2

College baseball

Jackson missed much of his senior season after being ruled ineligible by the NCAA following a visit with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, whom he believes tried to sabotage his baseball career.[14]

In his report, a scout stated that his only weakness was a lack of baseball experience. The scout said that he could be one of the all-time greats barring any injuries. He had a minor shoulder injury in the beginning of his collegiate football career, which didn't cause him issues in the long term. The scout also noted that this was his first year playing baseball and he seemed to be a "do it all type of player" and also stated he was "the best pure athlete in America today". This was in April 1985 when Bo was a 22-year-old scholarship athlete at Auburn University trying to make an even bigger name for himself than he already had in his football career. In this scouting report Jackson's worth to an MLB team was listed at only $200,000, much less than what he would end up taking home later on in his short-lived careers.[15]


1983 26 68 14 19 4 0 4 13 5 2 20 34 .279 .443 .515 .958
1984 Injured
1985 42 147 55 59 5 6 17 43 9 1 26 41 .401 .500 .864 1.364
1986 22 69 21 18 3 2 7 14 5 0 20 30 .261 .424 .652 1.076
TOTALS 90 284 90 96 12 8 28 70 19 3 66 105 .338 .466 .729 1.195


"Bo Over the Top"

On November 27, 1982, Jackson and the Auburn Tigers found themselves embattled with their heated in-state rival, Alabama (7–3), in the Iron Bowl in Birmingham, Alabama. Auburn held a 14–13 halftime lead when Alabama running back Paul Ott Carruth scored on an 8-yard touchdown run—and then the Crimson Tide added a field goal to make it a 22–14 Alabama lead going into the 4th quarter. Auburn responded as Al Del Greco made a 23-yard field goal to make it a 22–17 score in the 4th quarter. From Auburn's own 34-yard line, Bo Jackson and company began a long drive as he converted on a 4th-and-1 at the Alabama 42. Jackson, who ran 17 times for 114 yards during this Iron Bowl, continued marching his team downfield as he caught an 8-yard pass from quarterback Randy Campbell down to the Alabama 1-yard line. During the huddle Bo convinced Coach Dye to let him go over the top of offensive and defensive lines because he was a 7 foot high jumper in high school and the other team wouldn't be expecting it. On fourth down with 2:26 left in the game, Jackson completed the drive by going over the top for a one-yard touchdown run as Auburn (finished 9–3 in 1982) pulled off a 23–22 victory over Alabama and coach Paul "Bear" Bryant.[17]

College track and field

While at McAdory High School, Jackson competed as a sprinter, hurdler, jumper, thrower and decathlete. His best 100-meter time in high school was 10.44 seconds, but he would later run a 10.39 at Auburn. He also ran the 100-yard dash in 9.54 seconds. As a hurdler, he recorded times of 7.29 seconds in the 55m hurdles and 13.81 seconds in the 110m hurdles. In decathlon, he reached 8340 points. In the jumping events, he had personal-best jumps of 2.06 meters (6 feet, 9 inches) in the high jump, 7.52 meters (24 feet, 8 inches) in the long jump and 14.85 meters (48 feet, 9 inches) in the triple jump. As a thrower, he got top-throws of 15.27 meters (50 feet, 1 inch) in the shot put and 45.44 meters (149 feet, 1 inch) in the discus throw.[18]

Jackson qualified for the NCAA nationals in the 100-meter dash in his freshman and sophomore years. He considered a career in track and field, but sprinting would not gain him the financial security of the MLB or NFL, nor would he have sufficient time to train, given his other commitments. Jackson claimed he ran a 4.12 40-yard dash time at his pro day. Jackson claimed he was hand-timed by an NFL scout, but has never been verified.[19]

Personal bests

Event Time (sec.) Venue Date
50 meters 5.49 Rosemont, Illinois January 29, 1984
100 meters 10.39[20]

Professional sports career


Kansas City Royals

Jackson was selected with the first overall pick of the 1986 NFL Draft by the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, but he refused to play for them because a visit to team facilities they said was NCAA-approved was actually not, causing him to miss the remainder of his final college baseball season. Jackson believes that the failure to obtain NCAA approval was deliberate and was intended by the Buccaneers to get him to play football instead of baseball. He vowed not to sign with Tampa Bay should they draft him, but they proceeded anyway. He kept his vow and opted to play baseball for the Kansas City Royals, the defending World Series champions, who had drafted him in the fourth round, 105th overall, in the 1986 amateur draft. Shortly after the draft, Jackson signed a 3 year contract with the Kansas City Royals worth just over $1 million. He spent 53 games[21] with the Memphis Chicks,[22] the Royals' Class AA minor league affiliate, and was called up to the majors in September 1986. He made the Royals' roster in 1987 and hit 22 home runs, with 53 RBIs and 10 stolen bases as a left fielder.

Bo Jackson 1989 Kansas City Royals uniform
A replica of Jackson's 1989 Kansas City Royals road uniform

Jackson began to show his true potential in 1989, when he was voted to start for the American League All-Star team, and was named the game's MVP for his play on both offense and defense. In the top of the first inning, he caught Pedro Guerrero's 2-out line drive to left-center field to save two runs.[23] Then he led off the bottom of the first—his first All-Star plate appearance—with a monstrous 448-foot (137 m) home run off Rick Reuschel of the San Francisco Giants. NBC-TV announcer Vin Scully exclaimed, "Look at that one! Bo Jackson says hello!" Wade Boggs followed with his own home run, making them the first pair in All-Star history to lead off their sides first with back-to-back home runs.[24] In the 2nd inning, he beat out the throw on a potential double play to drive in the eventual winning run. He then stole second base, making him the second player in All-Star Game history to hit a home run and steal a base in the same game (the first was Willie Mays). Jackson finished the game with two hits in four at-bats, one run scored, and two RBI.

On June 5, 1989, Jackson barehanded a line-drive off the left field wall on a hit-and-run play against the Seattle Mariners. With speedy Harold Reynolds running from first base on the play, Scott Bradley's hit would have been deep enough to score him against most outfielders, but Jackson, from the warning track, turned flat footed and fired a strike on the fly to catcher Bob Boone who was over 300 feet away, who then tagged out the sliding Reynolds. Jackson's throw reached Boone on the fly. Interviewed for the "Bo Jackson" episode of ESPN Classic's SportsCentury, Reynolds admitted that he thought there was no way anyone would throw him out on such a deep drive into the gap in left-center, and was shocked to see his teammate telling him to slide as he rounded third base.

On July 29, 1988, against the Baltimore Orioles, Jackson, batting against Jeff Ballard, turned to the home plate umpire and attempted to call time out as Ballard was delivering the ball. The time-out wasn't granted, but Jackson recovered to swing and hit the pitch over the left-field wall for a home run despite only really seeing the ball as it was on its way to the plate.[25]

Jackson's 171 strikeouts in 1989 tied him for 10th most strikeouts in a season for a right-handed batter since 1893. On July 11, 1990, against the Orioles, Jackson performed his famous "wall run", when he caught a ball six strides away from the wall. As he caught the ball at full tilt, Jackson looked up and ran three steps along the wall, to avoid impact and the risk of injury from the fence.[26]

During the 1990 season, Jackson hit HRs in four consecutive at-bats tying a Major League record (held by several). His fourth came off of Randy Johnson after hitting his first three before a stint on the disabled list. Unwilling to pay his $2.375 million salary in 1991 to rehabilitate his football injury, the Royals released Jackson on March 18, 1991.[27]

Chicago White Sox and California Angels

Jackson played two seasons with the Chicago White Sox, appearing in 23 games in 1991 and 85 games in 1993. It was with the White Sox that he made his only post-season appearance, in the 1993 American League Championship Series, which Chicago lost to the Toronto Blue Jays in six games.

While with the Sox, Jackson promised his mother that once he returned from his hip replacement surgery he would hit a home run for her. Before he could return, his mother died. In his first at-bat after surgery, he hit a home run to right field. Jackson had the ball encased in acrylic and bolted to the dresser in her room, according to an interview on ESPN.

Jackson finished his career in 1994 with the California Angels. That season was cut short by the 1994–95 baseball strike, and Jackson decided to retire at age 32. "I got to know my family," he said, "That looks better to me than any $10 million contract."[28]

In his eight baseball seasons, Jackson had a career batting average of .250, hit 141 home runs and had 415 RBIs, with a slugging average of .474. His best year was 1989, with his effort earning him All-Star status. In 1989, Jackson ranked fourth in the American League in both home runs, with 32, and RBI, with 105.[29]

Notable achievements

  • AL All-Star (1989)
  • 1989 All-Star Game MVP
  • 1993 AL Comeback Player of the Year Award
  • 10th in the 1989 AL MVP race
  • 30-Home Run Seasons: 1 (1989)
  • 20-Home Run Seasons: 4 (1987–1990)
  • 20-Stolen Base Seasons: 2 (1988–1989)
  • 100 RBI Seasons: 1 (1989)

MLB statistics

Standard batting
1986 KCR 25 82 9 17 2 1 2 9 3 1 7 34 .207 .286 .329
1987 KCR 116 396 46 93 17 2 22 53 10 4 30 158 .235 .296 .455
1988 KCR 124 439 63 108 16 4 25 68 27 6 25 146 .246 .287 .472
1989 KCR 135 515 86 132 15 6 32 105 26 9 39 172 .256 .310 .495
1990 KCR 111 405 74 110 16 1 28 78 15 9 44 128 .272 .342 .523
1991 CHW 23 71 8 16 4 0 3 14 0 1 12 25 .225 .333 .408
1992 CHW
1993 CHW 85 284 32 66 9 0 16 45 0 2 23 106 .232 .289 .433
1994 CAL 75 201 23 56 7 0 13 43 1 0 20 72 .279 .344 .507
TOTALS 694 2,393 341 598 86 14 141 415 82 32 200 841 .250 .309 .474


Jackson was drafted first overall in the 1986 NFL Draft by the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. Controversy abounded before then that resulted in Jackson never playing for the team.

In addition to giving Jackson an ultimatum to pick between sports, Buccaneers management took Jackson on owner Hugh Culverhouse's private jet to visit with the team during his senior baseball season. Jackson was told by the Buccaneers that the trip, which could have cost Jackson his remaining collegiate eligibility, had been cleared by the NCAA. Jackson was later told by his baseball coach at Auburn that the trip was considered to be a violation of NCAA rules and that he was immediately ruled ineligible to play the remainder of the baseball season. Jackson, upset that Culverhouse lied to him, insisted that he would never play for the Buccaneers and that they could draft him if they wanted to, but he would not sign if he was drafted. It was said that Jackson, who was having what he called his best year playing baseball in school, made the Buccaneers nervous and that by getting him somehow ruled ineligible to play baseball, he would be forced to focus on football.[30]

Jackson held true to his threat not to sign, and the Buccaneers forfeited his rights before the 1987 draft. Jackson was in spring training with the Royals when someone informed him that he had a chance to play football again. Inquiring who it was, Jackson found out that he was taken in the seventh round of the draft with the 183rd pick by the Los Angeles Raiders. Initially Jackson had said he would continue to focus on baseball and would not sign, but his interest was piqued.[31][32] Raiders owner Al Davis was a fan of Jackson and was receptive to the idea of Jackson playing both baseball and football. Thus, a contract was negotiated where Jackson would be permitted to play the entire baseball season with the Royals and would report to the Raiders once the season was finished. In addition to this, Davis gave Jackson a salary that was in line with what a top-flight starter at halfback would make receiving a reported $500,000 signing bonus and another $500,000 if he returned the following year in 1988.

Jackson joined the Raiders in time for their Week 8 match-up against the New England Patriots, where he rushed for a total of 37 yards on eight carries. Jackson shared the backfield with Marcus Allen, himself an All-Pro and former Heisman Trophy winner, but eventually supplanted him as the featured running back despite being listed as the team's fullback. Perhaps his most notable performance in his rookie season came on Monday Night Football against the Seattle Seahawks in Week 12. Prior to the game Seahawks linebacker Brian Bosworth insulted Jackson and promised in a media event before the game to contain Jackson. Jackson responded by running over Bosworth on his way to a touchdown near the goal line. He also made a 91-yard run in the 2nd quarter, to the outside, untouched down the sideline. Jackson rushed for 221 yards that night and two touchdowns. He added a third with a reception. The 221 yards was a single-game record for the Raiders at the time.

In his rookie season, Jackson rushed for a total of 554 yards on only 81 carries for a 6.8 yards per carry average. He played in seven games, starting five, and scored a total of six touchdowns (four rushing, two receiving). The next year, Jackson played in ten of the Raiders' sixteen games with nine starts, recording a total of 580 yards and three touchdowns.

Jackson's 1989 season was his best in the league. In eleven games, with nine starts, Jackson rushed for a total of 950 yards with a 5.5 yards per carry average and four touchdowns. In his abbreviated 1990 campaign, Jackson rushed for 698 yards and was selected to the only Pro Bowl of his career.

Jackson suffered a NFL career-ending hip injury from a seemingly routine tackle at the end of a 34-yard run in a playoff game on January 13, 1991, against the Bengals.[33][34][35]

In his four seasons in the NFL, Jackson rushed for 2,782 yards and 16 touchdowns with an average yards per carry of 5.4. He also caught 40 passes for 352 yards and two touchdowns. Jackson's 221 yards on November 30, 1987, just 29 days after his first NFL carry, is still a Monday Night Football record.

NFL statistics

Year Team Rushing Receiving
GP Att Yds Avg Lng TD Rec Yds Avg Lng TD
1987 RAI 7 81 554 6.8 91 4 16 136 8.5 23 2
1988 RAI 10 136 580 4.3 25 3 9 79 8.8 27 0
1989 RAI 11 173 950 5.5 92 4 9 69 7.7 20 0
1990 RAI 10 125 698 5.6 88 5 6 68 11.3 18 0
TOTALS 38 515 2,782 5.4 92 16 40 352 9.1 27 2

Hip injury

Jackson's athletic career was affected by an injury to his left hip.

In his last game, the aforementioned playoff victory over Cincinnati in January 1991, Jackson suffered a dislocated hip following a tackle. In the film You Don't Know Bo, Jackson claimed that after he discovered the injury, he physically popped his hip back into the socket and in the process damaged the blood vessels supplying blood to the area.[36] While doctors did not find proof that Jackson physically reset his hip, they did discover that there was a fracture of one of Jackson's hip bones.

Within a month of the injury, Jackson had been diagnosed with avascular necrosis of the hip joint. He also was found to have lost all of the cartilage supporting his hip.[37] He would be forced to retire from football, and was then cut by the Royals in spring training. Jackson would return to competition with the White Sox toward the end of the 1991 baseball season


"Bo Knows"

Jackson became a popular figure for his athleticism in multiple sports through the late 1980s and early 1990s. He endorsed Nike and was involved in a popular ad campaign called "Bo Knows" which envisioned Jackson attempting to take up a litany of other sports, including tennis, golf, luge, auto racing, and even playing blues music with Bo Diddley, who scolded Jackson by telling him, "You don't know Diddley!"[38] This "Bo Knows" marketing campaign was for the release of the Nike Air Trainer I, a cross-training shoe, the first of its kind.[39]


The CHIKARA professional wrestling tag team the Throwbacks (baseball player Dasher Hatfield and football player Mark "Mr. Touchdown" Angelosetti) have a finishing move called "Bo Jackson".[40][41]

Video games

Called "the greatest athlete in video game history",[42] Jackson's digital counterpart was nicknamed by fans as "Tecmo Bo" since being featured in the 1989 video game Tecmo Bowl for the Nintendo Entertainment System, where he was all but untacklable.[43][44] Referencing his video game character, Jackson was featured in a 2016 advertisement for the Kia Sorento, with Jackson driving the car into a virtual stadium (a second ad features Brian Bosworth with Jackson referencing the infamous Monday Night Football touchdown run).[45]

He had his own video game for the original Game Boy portable gaming system, Bo Jackson's Hit and Run. The game featured both baseball and football. Released around the same time was Bo Jackson Baseball for the NES system and IBM-compatible computers. Jackson can be unlocked as a player in ESPN NFL Football. Jackson made an appearance in the 2004 video game NFL Street 2.[46] Jackson also made his first appearance in the modern Madden series, Madden 15 and Madden 16.


Jackson was a character in ProStars, an NBC Saturday morning cartoon show which also featured Wayne Gretzky and Michael Jordan fighting crime and helping children, although neither he, nor Gretzky, nor Jordan voiced their respective characters. He did however play the character Calvin Farquhar a sports radio jockey on the TV show Married...with Children.

He also appeared in an episode of the TV series Lois & Clark: The New Adventures of Superman in which he plays a basketball game with Clark Kent/Superman. He was also in the episode 'Naked Babies' (1995) on Diagnosis Murder, playing a nanny to four babies who had just had their mother kidnapped.


In 2007, Nike released a set of Nike Dunk shoes honoring Bo Jackson.[47] The set featured three colorways based on previously released Nike shoes: the "Bo Knows" Trainer I, Trainer 91 and Medicine Ball Trainer III.[48]

Bo Jackson's number 34 jerseys are still sold by the Oakland Raiders.[49]

Pre-game traditions

Before Royals games, Jackson used to shoot at a target with a bow and arrow in the Royals clubhouse.[50]

Life after sports

File-Bo Jackson Football Autograph at Third US Army Sept 12, 2007
Jackson signing autographs for American soldiers in September 2007

In 1995, Jackson completed his Bachelor of Science degree in Family and Child Development at Auburn[3] to fulfill the promise he made to his mother.[10]

Through the 1990s, Jackson dabbled in acting, having made several television guest appearances first on The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air in 1990 as well as Lois & Clark: The New Adventures of Superman and Married... with Children. He later appeared in small roles in the films The Chamber, The Pandora Project and Fakin' Da Funk.[51]

Jackson served as the President of the HealthSouth Sports Medicine Council, part of Birmingham, Alabama-based HealthSouth Corporation.[52]

Personal life

Jackson is married to Linda, a rehabilitation counselor, and has three children – sons Garrett and Nicholas, and a daughter, Morgan.[53] Jackson and his family live in Burr Ridge, Illinois. He is among a group of investors who own The Burr Ridge Bank and Trust in the Chicago suburbs. He is one of the bank's advisory directors and is said to be "rolling up his sleeves" and working along with everyone else to make sure that the small bank becomes a success during tough financial times. According to Jackson: "we have no type of debt, like all the other banks. We're a small community bank and one thing we all decided, is that if we are going to do a bank in our community, it needs to be owned by the people who live in the community."

The Chicago White Sox chose Jackson to throw the ceremonial first pitch before Game Two of the 2005 World Series. The White Sox went on to win that game on a 9th-inning walk-off home run, then swept Houston Astros for their first championship in 88 years.

In 2006, Jackson appeared on the Spike TV sports reality show Pros vs. Joes. In his second appearance, he easily defeated amateur athletes in a home run-hitting contest. When he bunted instead of swinging on his final try for a home run, the announcer stated: "Bo knows taunting."

In 2007, Jackson came together with John Cangelosi to form the Bo Jackson Elite Sports Complex, an 88,000-square-foot (8,200 m2) multi-sport dome facility in Lockport, Illinois. He is part-owner and CEO of the facility. He has been successful with other investments, including a food company, N'Genuity. He often says that while he may have been great for sports, sports were no doubt greater for him considering the post-career opportunities that have been afforded him.[54]

On May 9, 2009, Jackson delivered the commencement speech at Auburn University's graduation ceremony. His speech was centered on the benefits of stepping out of one's comfort zone.[55]

On July 12, 2010, Jackson threw the ceremonial first pitch before the 2010 Home Run Derby at Angel Stadium and participated in the celebrity softball game. Twenty years after his famous "Bo Knows" campaign, Jackson returned to do commercials for Nike in the fall of 2010 for their "BOOM" campaign. In this commercial, he playfully taunted New York Yankees star Robinson Canó during batting practice before being impressed by a hit, responding to it by saying "Boom!"

In December 2010, he was named a 2011 winner of the NCAA Silver Anniversary Award, given annually to six former NCAA student-athletes for distinguished career accomplishment on the 25th anniversary of their college graduation.[56]

In April 2012, Jackson participated in Bo Bikes Bama, a five-day, 300-mile gran fondo in support of victims of the tornado outbreak in Alabama. The five-day gran fondo was a one-time event and has become an annual[57] maximum single-day gran fondo lasting approximately 62 miles.

On January 22, 2014, Jackson rejoined the Chicago White Sox as an ambassador to the team – joining the ranks of Frank Thomas, Minnie Miñoso, Carlton Fisk, Ron Kittle, Carlos May, and Bill Melton.[58]

In a 2017 interview with USA Today, Jackson admitted he never would have played football if he had known the health risks associated with it. "I wish I had known about all of those head injuries, but no one knew that. And the people that did know that, they wouldn’t tell anybody," he said. “The game has gotten so violent, so rough. We’re so much more educated on this CTE stuff (chronic traumatic encephalopathy), there’s no way I would ever allow my kids to play football today."[59]

See also


  1. ^ "You Don't Know Bo - ESPN Films: 30 for 30". Retrieved 2018-07-11.
  2. ^ "ESPN Classic". Retrieved June 1, 2007.
  3. ^ a b " Bo knows stardom and disappointment". ESPN. Retrieved March 21, 2014.
  4. ^ Bo Jackson on ‘The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air
  5. ^ Bo Jackson (and his mustache) on ‘Married With Children’
  6. ^ "Interview with Bo Jackson". National Strength and Conditioning Association. Archived from the original on April 25, 2009. Retrieved October 5, 2009.
  7. ^ Wolff, Alexander (September 5, 1984). "Bo on the Go". Sports Illustrated.
  8. ^ Heisler, Mark, It's the Bo Show, Los Angeles Times, March 30, 1988
  9. ^ Berkow, Ira (January 28, 1984). "The Jackson Kid". The New York Times. Retrieved 2016-05-13.
  10. ^ a b c ESPN SportsCentury (TV-Series).
  11. ^ "2011 Southeastern Conference Football Media Guide". August 29, 2011.
  12. ^ "Auburn quarterback shoots down Boston College". Anchorage Daily News. Anchorage, Alaska. December 18, 1982. p. C-5. Retrieved February 7, 2013.
  13. ^ "Liberty Bowl MVPs". Liberty Bowl. Archived from the original on August 11, 2007. Retrieved August 18, 2007.
  14. ^ Dagostino, Jake. "Columnist". Bleacher Report. Retrieved April 28, 2014.
  15. ^ Snyder, Matt (May 7, 2013). "Bo Jackson's 1985 scouting report (Hint: He was good at baseball)". CBS Sports. Retrieved 2016-05-13.
  16. ^ "2013 Auburn baseball fact book" (PDF). Retrieved March 20, 2013.
  17. ^ "Tigers Claw 'Bama 23-22". Sarasota Herald-Tribune. Sarasota, Florida. November 28, 1982. p. 16-B. Retrieved February 6, 2013.
  18. ^ "Bo Jackson: Auburn, Raiders RB". Retrieved September 25, 2016.
  19. ^ Frank Cooney (February 19, 2015). "2015 NFL Combine: Real-time 40s to be used for first time". CBS Sports.
  20. ^ Simons, Asher (December 28, 2013). Sporting Heroes: Bo Jackson's efforts in two sports earn legend status . The Independent. Retrieved on 2014-10-10.
  21. ^ "Bo Jackson Minor League Statistics". Baseball Reference. Retrieved February 4, 2013.
  22. ^ Looney, Douglas S. (July 14, 1986). "Bo's Not One To Go With The Flow". Sports Illustrated: 36.
  23. ^ Baseball Almanac
  24. ^ Baseball Almanac 1989 All-Star game play by play
  25. ^ "Bo Jackson Moment: The Legendary Timeout Home Run". YouTube. October 10, 2013. Retrieved November 5, 2015.
  26. ^ MLB (April 28, 2013), Bo scales the wall in Baltimore, retrieved 2018-07-11
  27. ^ Wulf, Steve (April 1, 1991). "Say it ain't so, Bo". Sports Illustrated: 34.
  28. ^ "Bo Jackson Quits Baseball; Says "Family Looks Better than $10 Million Contract."". Jet. April 24, 1995.
  29. ^ "Bo Jackson Statistics and History". Baseball-Reference. Retrieved 2016-05-13.
  30. ^ Sport Illustrated. "Say It Ain't So: Tampa Bay Buccaneers". Sports Illustrated. Retrieved 2001-02-21.
  31. ^ Flatter, Ron. "Bo knows stardom and disappointment". ESPN. Retrieved 2007-08-21.
  32. ^ Heisler, Mark (April 29, 1987). "1987 Draft : In 7th Round, Raiders Draft Jackson--But He Says He's a Baseball Player". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved September 18, 2012.
  33. ^ "Bo knows stardom and disappointment". Retrieved April 12, 2016.
  34. ^ "Greatest Moments: 1990 AFC Divisional Playoff". Retrieved April 12, 2016.
  35. ^ "Bo Jackson injury". Retrieved April 12, 2016.
  36. ^ ESPN 30 for 30: "You Don't Know Bo"
  37. ^ Altman, Lawrence K. "Jackson's Case Is Dividing The Doctors". Retrieved 2018-07-11.
  38. ^ "Best Spots of the 90's". AdWeek. March 20, 2000. Archived from the original on March 11, 2007. Retrieved March 19, 2007.
  39. ^ "Idea to link cross-training with athlete Bo Jackson, featured in this Joe Pytka-directed spot . READY, SET, BO HOW NIKE, WIEDEN'S RISWOLD `JUST DID IT' FOR CROSS-TRAINING". June 20, 1994. Retrieved 2015-12-17.
  40. ^ Kevin Ford. "CHIKARA Give 'Em The Axe". The CHIKARA Special. Retrieved July 26, 2015.
  41. ^ "CHIKARA Podcast-A-Go-Go 395". YouTube. December 15, 2014. Retrieved July 26, 2015.
  42. ^ Good, Owen (July 3, 2013). "The Greatest Athlete In Video Game History Returns Next Week". Kotaku Australia. Missing or empty |url= (help); |access-date= requires |url= (help)
  43. ^ Simmons, Bill (February 8, 2014). "Totally wired for Madden '03". Page 2. ESPN. Retrieved March 21, 2014.
  44. ^ Azpiri, Jon (February 5, 2004). "Video game fame". Salon. Retrieved March 21, 2014.
  45. ^ Brinson, Will (September 10, 2016). "WATCH: Kia's Bo Jackson 'Tecmo Bowl' ad is marketing perfection on multiple levels". CBS Sports. Retrieved September 11, 2016.
  46. ^ Jon Robinson (December 8, 2004). "NFL Street 2: The Legends Part 2". Retrieved July 26, 2015.
  47. ^ EUKicks – Nike "Bo Jackson" Dunk High Pack"
  48. ^ Halfhill, Matt. "Nicekicks – Bo Jackson Trainer Dunk Highs". Retrieved March 21, 2014.
  49. ^ "Bo Jackson Oakland Raiders Jerseys". NFL Shop. Retrieved 2016-05-13.
  50. ^ Kaegel, Dick (February 28, 2004). "Kaegel to cover KC for". Kansas City Royals. Archived from the original on July 14, 2011. Retrieved December 19, 2010.
  51. ^ Bo Jackson on IMDb
  52. ^ Flatter, Ron. " Bo knows stardom and disappointment". Archived from the original on 2017-08-13. Retrieved 2018-07-15. He serves as president of the Sports Medicine Council, a non-profit, youth outreach organization of HealthSouth Corporation.
  53. ^ Nightengale, Bob (July 12, 2010). "Bo Jackson reflects on past life 21 years after his All-Star blast". USA Today. Retrieved March 22, 2012.
  54. ^ Crowe, Jerry (April 15, 2009). "Bo Jackson is thriving outside the lines". Archived from the original on July 16, 2011. Retrieved January 17, 2011.
  55. ^ Gribble, Andrew (March 10, 2009). "AU FOOTBALL: Bo talks life after football". Beat Reporter. Auburn University. Retrieved May 10, 2009.
  56. ^ "NCAA Names Silver Anniversary Winners" (Press release). NCAA. December 1, 2010. Archived from the original on December 5, 2010. Retrieved April 4, 2011.
  57. ^ "Ride Details". Bo Bikes Bama. Retrieved 2018-07-15.
  58. ^ "White Sox welcome back Bo Jackson as Team Ambassador". (Press release). Retrieved June 18, 2015.
  59. ^ Nightengale, Bob (January 12, 2017). "Bo Jackson's startling hindsight: 'I would have never played football'". USA Today. Gannett Company. Retrieved January 13, 2017.

Further reading

  • Gutman, Bill, Bo Jackson, 1991, Simon Spotlight Entertainment
  • White, Ellen Emerson, Bo Jackson: Playing the Games, 1990

External links

1985 Auburn Tigers football team

The 1985 Auburn Tigers football team represented Auburn University in the 1985 NCAA Division I-A football season.

1985 College Football All-America Team

The 1985 College Football All-America team is composed of college football players who were selected as All-Americans by various organizations and writers that chose College Football All-America Teams in 1985. The National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) recognizes five selectors as "official" for the 1985 season. They are: (1) the American Football Coaches Association (AFCA); (2) the Associated Press (AP) selected based on the votes of sports writers at AP newspapers; (3) the Football Writers Association of America (FWAA); (4) the United Press International (UPI) selected based on the votes of sports writers at UPI newspapers; and (5) the Walter Camp Football Foundation (WC). Other selectors included Football News (FN), Gannett News Service (GNS), the Newspaper Enterprise Association (NEA), Pro Football Weekly, Scripps Howard (SH), and The Sporting News (TSN).

Ten players were unanimously selected as first-team All-Americans by all five official selectors. They are:

Bo Jackson, Auburn running back who rushed for 1,786 yards and won the 1985 Heisman Trophy;

Chuck Long, Iowa quarterback who won the 1985 Davey O'Brien Award and Maxwell Award and placed second in the 1985 Heisman Trophy voting;

Lorenzo White, Michigan State running back who became the first Big Ten Conference player to rush for over 2,000 yards and placed fourth in the 1985 Heisman Trophy voting;

Brian Bosworth, Oklahoma linebacker who won the 1985 Dick Butkus Award;

David Williams, Illinois wide receiver who caught 85 passes for 1,047 yards and finished his college career as the second leading receiver in NCAA history;

Larry Station, Iowa linebacker who led the team in tackles for the fourth straight season with 129;

John Lee, UCLA placekicker who set the NCAA record for highest percentage of extra points and field goals made in a career with 93.3% (116 of 117 PATs, 79 of 92 FGs);

Jim Dombrowski, Virginia offensive tackle;

Leslie O'Neal, Oklahoma defensive end; and

Tim Green, Syracuse defensive end.

1985 NCAA Division I-A football season

The 1985 NCAA Division I-A football season saw the Oklahoma Sooners, led by head coach Barry Switzer, win the national championship.

Oklahoma finished the season 11-1, with their only loss to Miami at home, in a game in which future NFL star Troy Aikman was lost for the season. The Sooners regrouped and went undefeated the rest of the way, finishing the season with a win over Penn State in the Orange Bowl.

Michigan would finish #2, the highest finish of a Bo Schembechler led team. The team shined on defense, led by All-Americans Mike Hammerstein and Mark Messner.

Tennessee finished the season with a victory over #2 Miami in the Sugar Bowl. This team won the school's first SEC championship in 16 years and was nicknamed the "Sugar Vols". The SEC title was the first of three for coach Johnny Majors.

Air Force Falcons, under Fisher DeBerry had what is considered their best season ever, defeating Texas in the Bluebonnet Bowl and finishing #5.

This year's edition of the Iron Bowl is widely considered to be one of the greatest ever. Despite Auburn having Heisman Trophy winner Bo Jackson on its side, Alabama won this game with a last second field goal.

This would be the last year for the Missouri Valley Conference in Division 1-A football. 5 of the 7 teams in the conference (Drake, Illinois State, Indiana State, Southern Illinois, and West Texas State) would drop from Division 1-A football the following season with the other 2 members (Tulsa and Wichita State) becoming independents the following season.

1986 Cotton Bowl Classic

The 1986 Cotton Bowl Classic was an American college football bowl game played on January 1, 1986 at the Cotton Bowl in Dallas, Texas. It was the 50th Cotton Bowl Classic held. The game featured the Texas A&M Aggies and the Auburn Tigers.

1986 Kansas City Royals season

The 1986 Kansas City Royals season was a season in American baseball. It involved the Royals finishing 3rd in the American League West with a record of 76 wins and 86 losses.

1986 Major League Baseball draft

The 1986 Major League Baseball Draft was the 22nd MLB draft that took place in 1986. During this draft 21 future all-stars were drafted including, Greg Swindell, Matt Williams, Kevin Brown, Gary Sheffield, Roberto Hernández, Jack Armstrong, Dean Palmer, Scott Cooper, Kent Bottenfield, Bo Jackson, Joe Girardi, Pat Hentgen, Tom Gordon, Steve Finley, Rod Beck, Chuck Knoblauch, Rick Reed, Paul Quantrill, John Olerud, Scott Erickson and Todd Jones.

1988 Los Angeles Raiders season

The 1988 Los Angeles Raiders season was the franchise's 29th season overall, and the franchise's 19th season in the National Football League. Mike Shanahan was hired as head coach, and the club finished with a 7–9 record. The Raiders drafted Heisman Trophy winner Tim Brown, making Brown the third person on the Raiders roster to have won the Heisman Trophy, the others being Marcus Allen and Bo Jackson. Most of the team's success throughout the season came through their division, as the Raiders finished 6-2 against the weak AFC West division, with their only 2 losses against the champions of the division, the Seattle Seahawks. However, the Raiders were only 1-7 against the rest of the NFL, with their only other win coming against the eventual champions, the 49ers in San Francisco in a game in which only field goals were kicked.

1989 Kansas City Royals season

The 1989 Kansas City Royals season was a season in American baseball. It involved the Royals finishing second in the American League West with a record of 92 wins and 70 losses. The Royals' record was tied for the third best in baseball, but in the pre-wild card era, the team did not qualify for the post-season.

1990 Kansas City Royals season

The 1990 Kansas City Royals season was a season in American baseball. It involved the Royals finishing 6th in the American League West with a record of 75 wins and 86 losses.

Auburn Tigers football

The Auburn Tigers football program represents Auburn University in the sport of American college football. Auburn competes in the Football Bowl Subdivision (FBS) of the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) and the Western Division of the Southeastern Conference (SEC).

Auburn officially began competing in intercollegiate football in 1892. The Tigers joined the Southeastern Conference in 1932 as one of the inaugural members of the conference and the Tigers began competing in the West Division when the conference divided in 1992. Auburn officially claims two national championships. Auburn has achieved twelve undefeated seasons and won twelve conference championships, along with eight divisional championships. The Tigers have made 43 post season bowl appearances, including 12 historically major bowl berths. The Tigers have the 13th most wins in FBS history with over 700 victories and have finished ranked in the Top 25 of either the AP or Coaches polls 37 times, including finishing in the top ten 18 times (ranked 12th nationally for top ten finishes).

The Tigers have produced three Heisman Trophy winners: quarterback Pat Sullivan in 1971, running back Bo Jackson in 1985, and quarterback Cameron Newton in 2010. Auburn has also produced twenty-nine consensus All-American players. The College Football Hall of Fame has inducted a total of 12 individuals from Auburn, including eight student-athletes and four head coaches: John Heisman, Mike Donahue, Ralph Jordan, and Pat Dye. Jordan, who coached from 1951 to 1975, led Auburn to its first national championship and won a total of 176 games, the most by any Auburn coach.

Auburn's home stadium is Jordan–Hare Stadium, which opened in 1939 and becomes Alabama's fifth largest city on gamedays with a capacity of 87,451. Auburn's arch rival is in-state foe Alabama. The Tigers and Crimson Tide meet annually in the Iron Bowl, one of the biggest rivalries in all of sports. The Tigers are currently led by head coach Gus Malzahn.

Auburn Tigers football statistical leaders

The Auburn Tigers football statistical leaders are individual statistical leaders of the Auburn Tigers football program in various categories, including passing, rushing, receiving, total offense, defensive stats, and kicking. Within those areas, the lists identify single-game, Single season and career leaders. The Tigers represent Auburn University in the NCAA's Southeastern Conference.

Although Auburn began competing in intercollegiate football in 1892, the school's official record book considers the "modern era" to have begun in 1947. Records from before this year are often incomplete and inconsistent, and they are generally not included in these lists.

These lists are dominated by more recent players for several reasons:

Since 1947, seasons have increased from 10 games to 11 and then 12 games in length.

The NCAA didn't allow freshmen to play varsity football until 1972 (with the exception of the World War II years), allowing players to have four-year careers.

Bowl games only began counting toward Single season and career statistics in 2002. The Tigers have played in 14 bowl games since this decision.

The Tigers have had two seasons, 2010 and 2013, in which the Tigers run a high-octane offense that racked up 6,989 and 7,018 offensive yards, respectively. In fact, eight of the Tigers' ten seasons with the highest offensive output have come since 2000 under head coaches Tommy Tuberville, Gene Chizik, and Gus Malzahn.These lists are updated through the end of the 2017 season.

Bo Jackson Baseball

Bo Jackson Baseball is a baseball video game that was released for the Nintendo Entertainment System, Commodore Amiga and IBM PC-compatibles. The game features athlete Bo Jackson, who at the time of the game's release was a star in professional baseball and a former professional football player. In Europe, the game was released by Mindscape as TV Sports: Baseball, part of the TV Sports series that included TV Sports: Basketball and other games based on hockey and American football.

Bo Knows

"Bo Knows" was an advertising campaign for Nike cross-training shoes that ran in 1989 and 1990 and featured professional baseball and American football player Bo Jackson.

Jackson was the first athlete in the modern era to play professional baseball and football in the same year. He was a suitable spokesman for Nike's shoe geared toward an athlete engaged in more than one sport or with little time between activities to switch to sport-specific footwear.

Bo Over the Top

Bo Over the Top was an iconic collegiate football play in the 1982 Iron Bowl. The play involved famous Heisman Trophy winner Bo Jackson and proved to be the deciding factor in the game between the Auburn Tigers and Alabama Crimson Tide. The "Over the Top" refers to the nature of the play. Jackson, a state champion high jumper in high school, jumped over the Alabama defensive line on a critical 4th down play from the 1-yard line.

Craig Erickson

Craig Neil Erickson (born May 17, 1969) is a former professional quarterback who was selected by the Philadelphia Eagles in the fifth round of the 1991 NFL Draft and also by the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in the fourth round of the 1992 NFL Draft. He is one of the few NFL players to be drafted twice, another famous example being Bo Jackson. Coincidentally, each was drafted by the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.


ProStars is a cartoon television show featured on Saturday morning cartoon. It was produced by DIC Animation City and aired on NBC from September 14 to December 7, 1991. Three famous and popular professional athletes from the 1990s appear in the show in live action and as fictional super hero characters: Michael Jordan, Wayne Gretzky and Bo Jackson.

The Pandora Project

The Pandora Project is an action thriller released in 1998. The film stars Daniel Baldwin, Erika Eleniak, Tony Todd and Bo Jackson.

Tommie Agee (American football)

Thomas Lee Agee (born February 22, 1964) is a former American football running back in the National Football League for the Seattle Seahawks, Kansas City Chiefs, and Dallas Cowboys. He played college football at Auburn University.

Zeke Smith

Roger Duane "Zeke" Smith (September 29, 1936 – July 22, 2016) was an American football player in the National Football League for the Baltimore Colts and the New York Giants. He played college football at Auburn University where he was awarded the Outland Trophy in 1958. His banner, along with four other Auburn greats - Bo Jackson, Pat Sullivan, Tracy Rocker and Carlos Rogers, is hanging outside Jordan–Hare Stadium in his honor. He was drafted in the fourth round of the 1959 NFL Draft.Smith died on July 22, 2016. He was 79 years old at the time of his death.

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