Posted: 8:14 a.m. Monday, May 20, 2013
By Jared Smith
Thanks to Twitter and the talkativeness of former Syracuse quarterback Donovan McNabb, we all knew the former No. 5 was going to be honored sometime this upcoming season by having his jersey retired.
Well, thanks to a weekend press release by the Syracuse University athletic department, we know McNabb will not be the only former Orangemen quarterback being honored this upcoming season.
Before McNabb is honored on Nov. 2, Don McPherson's jersey No. 9 will get its moment in the sun on Oct. 5.
“It is our pleasure to honor Donovan McNabb and Don McPherson and recognize their importance to the history of Syracuse football. Both of these men were catalysts for some of the greatest success in college football during their respectful tenures at Syracuse. We want to recognize these extraordinary men during our inaugural season in the ACC as we look to establish new success,” said Syracuse Director of Athletics Dr. Daryl Gross. “We celebrate two individuals who were significant in branding Syracuse football as a national power. The nation's eyes were fixated on these two amazing student-athletes as they helped elevate and maintain SU football's prominence.
The timing of the honors are fitting considering before there was McNabb there was McPherson, who was named an All-American in 1987 and despite finishing second in the Heisman Trophy balloting still was honored with the Maxwell Award and the Davey O'Brien Award.
McPherson was named the the College Football Hall of Fame in 2009 and literally, in 1988, helped lead SU to its best chance to win a National Championship since doing so in 1959. (FREAKIN' AUBURN!!)
Most young Syracuse fans know him now as a the Big East Football analyst on SNY.
“There are so many people who are responsible for this honor who should be standing next to me when this happens,” McPherson said. “In sports we wear jerseys because we are part of a team. The number on the jersey is meant to identify the player wearing it. To have my jersey singled out is more a moment of reflection than accomplishment. It makes me think about what I did to deserve this and that makes me think about all of the people who came before me, were at Syracuse with me and who have been there since I graduated. A significant part of my journey has been having somebody like Coach Mac in my life. When Daryl Gross called to tell me about this event, I started to write down the names of those who have impacted who I am and it quickly became too long to list everyone. I am blessed.”
On the day McPherson will be honored, the Orange will face Clemson. Meanwhile, SU hosts Wake Forest when McNabb is honored.