SAVANNAH, Ga. (WSAV) — An NFL legend who started in Savannah still won’t stop reaching for the top — even after retiring. Some may know Shannon Sharpe as the man going head to head on Fox Sports 1 debate show ‘Undisputed.’
Others might revere the Hall of Fame tight end that won three Super Bowls and set the all-time record in receptions and receiving yards. But before all of that, Sharpe’s career started in the Coastal Empire at Savannah State.
“For our fans, they got an opportunity to witness him do a lot of those things and even more on our field,” explains Sterling Stewart, Savannah State Athletic Director.
Sharpe still owns three Savannah State records including career receiving yards and career receiving touchdowns. He played for Bill Davis’ Savannah State Tigers from 1986-1989. In his final year, Sharpe led the Tigers to an 8-1 record and was All-SIAC player from 87-89. And in 2009, Savannah State retired his number 2 jersey.
Even still, the Tigers are still looking for someone to fill those shoes.“If we can get one of our tight ends to play like Shannon Sharpe we’d be in pretty good shape,” says Erik Raeburn, Savannah State Head Football Coach.
“Everybody associated with our program and our school takes a lot of pride knowing that you know one of their own not just made it to the NFL but was a star.” There is one lesson Coach Raeburn hopes his current players will learn from the one-time seventh-round draft pick.
“Obviously he wasn’t a number one first-round draft choice. But he still found a way to persevere and win a spot on an NFL roster,” Raeburn explains. “He’s proof that if you’re good enough the NFL will find you.” He’s also proof of the Savannah State mantra.“
As our motto says, you can get anywhere from here,” Sharpe said back in 2011. Sharpe went on to play for the Baltimore Ravens and Denver Broncos and was an NFL analyst for CBS.