Saturday, January 18, 2014

Packers QB Rodgers to visit Allen for KU-OSU


Former Super Bowl MVP and current Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers spent Friday in Lawrence, the precursor to today’s main event — No. 15 Kansas vs. No. 9 Oklahoma State at 3 p.m. at Allen Fieldhouse.

“This is kind of on the bucket list,” Rodgers said in an interview with the Journal-World after watching practice and shooting around in the old gym. “It just doesn’t usually work with my schedule to be able to get back here for a game.”

Rodgers, a nine-year pro who played two years of college ball at Cal, long has had a trip to KU’s historic hoops arena near the top of his to-do list, and a friend made this weekend’s trip possible. The credit for his interest in KU basketball belongs to one of the Packers’ trainers, who went to KU, but his appreciation for KU’s history and tradition go back to his days as a young sports fan.

“I’ve been able to go to (Boston’s) Fenway Park in baseball, I play at probably the most famous stadium (Lambeau Field) in the (NFL), and I thought it’d be fun to go to an arena like this that has so much history, a great coach and great support,” Rodgers said.

Asked for the most obscure bit of KU basketball knowledge he owns, Rodgers pointed to his love for his Bay-Area brother and former Jayhawk.

“I’m a big Drew Gooden fan,” Rodgers said, his face lighting up. “And it’s fun to look up in the rafters and see a bunch of the names I remember from when I was a kid. It’s fun to be at a place that has so much history.”

Rodgers spent the day dining downtown and then watched KU’s final practice in preparation for today’s Big 12 showdown with the Cowboys. After practice, he met the players and coaches and posed for pictures with the Jayhawks.

Rodgers said he was in Detroit in 2008, when KU knocked off Villanova and Davidson en route to the national championship.

“Those were some of the best games I’ve ever seen,” he said.

As for whether Rodgers, an all-pro quarterback who is regarded as one of the best in the game today, has any basketball skills, the Chico, Calif., native was honest in his self-assessment.

“I played a little,” he said, grinning. “But the height of my game was in eighth grade. I realized early on that I didn’t have a big future in basketball.”


Lonnie Ross Dillon 6 years, 12 months ago

You click on the Facebook icon...the one that says share :)

Rodney Crain 6 years, 12 months ago

You can take measure of respect a team has for a rival player by how they talk about them after they lose to them. Living in Chicago they talk about #12 as the sole reason that they can not beat Green Bay, but they never put him down. Here they hate Green Bay like we do Missouri so that is saying something to admit that. His play and mutual respect on the field are a joy to watch up close. I admit I am a Green Bay fan here in the windy city and a lot is due to Mr. Rogers.

So cool to also know he admires the same team I have loved for so long. Welcome sir to a place that is also a considered "title town" as well.

Walter Bridges 6 years, 12 months ago

If you only get to go to AFH once...not a bad day to go..

Cassie Gilmore 6 years, 12 months ago

All of the greats in KU history and he mentions Drew Gooden? I just threw up in my mouth a little.

Ashwin Rao 6 years, 12 months ago

If a Jayhawk is mentioned, I am proud... RCJH!

Adam Tyler 6 years, 12 months ago

You must be new to KU basketball.

Check the rafters to realize that Drew Gooden WAS one of the GREATS in KU basketball history.

Dirk Medema 6 years, 12 months ago

and Drew is from the Bay Area (SF) which is where Aaron went to school (Cal) - not that all of that wasn't mentioned in the article or anything.

Ashwin Rao 6 years, 12 months ago

I won't be surprised if Weis had something to do with this visit... with all the recruits coming in, what a great way to showcase the program! I am glad regardless!

Rodney Crain 6 years, 12 months ago

Not sure Rodgers would care about helping Weis. His makeup is about being the best, he likes to feed that engine and to visit AFH is a bucket list item that is right in his interest zone. He is there to soak up the environment and the experience.

Dirk Medema 6 years, 12 months ago

Doubt that Charlie would have factored into Aaron coming, but I certainly hope that someone in the AD would have communicated that with him before this article, and expect that Charlie will use it to his advantage with the recruits. He has commonly commented on the Phog being a great recruiting tool.

Doug Roberts 6 years, 12 months ago

I wish it was Peyton Manning visiting instead...

Andy Tweedy 6 years, 12 months ago

Does that mean you like Peyton Manning or does that mean you wish he had more free time this weekend?

W Keith Swinehart II 6 years, 12 months ago

Historic Allen Fieldhouse and watching a prime Jayhawk basketball game is on many bucket lists. We are truly fortunate.

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