Illini Legends, Lists & Lore: Happy 71st, Dick Butkus

Jeff George, by the numbers

Today marks former Illini all-star quarterback Jeff George’s 46th birthday. He’ll be remembered for leading Illinois to the 1988 All-American Bowl and to the 1990 Citrus Bowl, then surviving in the NFL for 15 seasons. George’s career story, by the numbers:

8: Number of NFL teams with which he played — Colts (1990-93), Falcons (1994-96), Raiders (1997-98), Vikings (1999), Redskins (2000-01), Seahawks (2002), Bears (2004) and Buccaneers (2005)

11: His jersey number at Illinois

78: Total number of NFL No. 1 draft picks in history, of which he’s one

154: Number of touchdowns he threw during his NFL career

1985: Year he was presented the Dial Award as the national high school scholar-athlete of the year at Indianapolis’ Warren Central High School

1987: Year he transferred from Purdue to Illinois

1990: Year he was the first draft pick of the Indianapolis Colts

1997: Season he led the NFL in passing yards (3,917) for the Oakland Raiders

27,602: Passing yards he accumulated as an NFL quarterback

50,000,000: Approximately, in dollars, his career salary as an NFL player. He signed the richest rookie contract (at the time) for $15 million with the Colts in 1990.

Illini Birthdays

Sunday: Antwoine Patton, football (41)

Monday: Dick Butkus, football (71)

Tuesday: Justin Staples, football (24)

Wednesday: Robert Holcombe, football (38)

Thursday: Anthony Welch, basketball (50)

Friday: Tonja Buford, track & field (43)

Saturday: Matt Arrandale, baseball (43)

By Mike Pearson, author of Illini Legends, Lists & Lore

Get Illini birthdays, trivia and historical tidbits daily on Twitter @B1GLLL

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