(Photo Courtesy: Twitter @ByCasagrande)
It’s hard to think of a single school, with a more impressive class of football alumni than the University of Miami. USC might be close. Florida is the running. And with the way Nick Saban recruits/evaluates/motivates/coaches/rules college football with an authoritarian fist, Alabama will get there soon. But right now, when you think college football excellence translating to the pro level, “The U” is it.
And it’s because of that fact- that Miami has a crap ton of ex-players, making a crap ton of money in the NFL- that it wasn’t surprising Friday to hear that the Hurricanes recently named their locker room after a famous alumnus. The decision came after that alumnus gave the largest donation ever to the school’s athletic department from an ex-student.
Of course if we were talking about any alumnus, this probably wouldn’t be a story. Only we aren’t talking about just any alumnus; not Ed Reed, Andre Johnson or Ray Lewis. Nope, instead we’re talking about Dwayne Johnson.
You may know him as “The Rock.”
That’s right, before “The Rock” was Tokyo Drift-ing his way to Hollywood stardom, he was Dwayne Johnson a little-known, but well-respected defensive lineman for the Miami Hurricanes. During his time at the school he earned a National Championship (in 1991) and had it not been for injuries, and the emergence of some guy named Warren Sapp at the same position, Johnson’s fame may have eventually come on the gridiron, not the silver screen.
Except, well, Johnson ended up in Hollywood and things have obviously turned out pretty well. So well in fact, that Johnson elected to give back quite a pretty penny to the university, which in turn, led to the football locker room being named after him recently.
Here’s what Johnson had to say about his time at Miami, after being honored with the University of Miami Alumni Association in April with the Edward T. Foote, II Alumnus of distinction award:
"It is important to give back because Miami has made me into the man I am today…taught me about hard work, discipline and sacrifice, but most importantly how to lose graciously and win graciously and humbly. So I went from that kid…to receiving this award."
It really is “All About the U!” huh?
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