Boise State Football

Broncos get to know Bo: Boise State football gets visit from legendary athlete

Some pretty incredible athletes have appeared in Boise State’s Bleymaier Football Center, but none quite like who showed up Monday morning.

Bo Jackson, the only person to be an All-Star in Major League Baseball and a Pro Bowler in the National Football League, spoke to the Broncos at a surprise, hour-long team meeting.

“Any time you have an athlete as dominant as Bo Jackson, it is an awesome opportunity to hear his story,” Boise State coach Bryan Harsin said in a statement provided to the Idaho Statesman. “Bo was gracious enough to spend some time with our team and coaches today talking about football, school and life, and the decisions you make along the way to set yourself up to be successful in each. He had our guys on the edge of their seat, as the name Bo Jackson carries a tremendous amount of influence.”

Jackson won the 1985 Heisman Trophy and was the No. 1 pick in the ensuing NFL Draft. He did not want to play for the Buccaneers, the team that drafted him, so he pursued a baseball career and made his MLB debut with the Royals in September 1986. He then was drafted by the Raiders and played four seasons, rushing for 2,782 yards before a hip injury ended his football career.

In eight MLB seasons with the Royals, White Sox and Angels, Jackson hit 141 home runs. He famously was close to unstoppable in the original Nintendo version of Tecmo Bowl, and on the diamond, he did some incredible things, like scaling a wall after a running catch, or breaking bats on his knee or head.

Jackson was in Boise for a business meeting with Albertsons, according to Boise State. He has a line of food products called Bo Jackson Signature Foods (burgers, seafood, beef, steaks and tailgating packages).

Since 2013, Jackson has hosted a bike ride across his home state of Alabama to support its emergency relief fund.

Dave Southorn is a 2004 graduate from the University of Colorado. He has covered Boise State athletics since 2005, and worked at the Idaho Statesman since 2013. He’s won multiple Idaho Press Club awards and once won a contest designing a play for the Seattle Seahawks.If you like seeing stories like this, please consider supporting our work with a digital subscription to the Idaho Statesman.