Friday, July 18, 2014

Villanova football season countdown: 42 is for...

Leading up to the opening game of the Villanova football season on August 29 against Syracuse, Fact on Villanova Sports will be counting down the days between now and the beginning of the football season using the jersey numbers of Villanova football players of the past and present. For as many numbers as possible, effort will be taken to introduce players from the current team, with the exception of "important" players from the past. Also, it's a ton of work to get pictures of all the players, so it may be incomplete. Oh well.     
Curtis Eller

Linebacker: 1989-1992

Some numbers are particularly difficult to assign to a player. The first time I did this, I assigned 42 to Brian Hulea, who is Villanova's all time leader in tackles. This time however, I have decided to assign 42 to a different player, Curtis Eller, who was Villanova's first ever two-time all-American, a two time Yankee Conference player of the year, and is still second in school history in career tackles. After his career on the Main Line, Eller played with the Saskatchewan Roughriders of the CFL.

When his number was retired in 1998, Villanova head coach Andy Talley had this to say about Eller:

"Curtis is the best linebacker that ever played in the new Villanova era. He was the first two-time All-American at Villanova and the only player here named to the Yankee Conference All-Time Team. Curtis is easily one of the most celebrated players of any football era at Villanova, and he is the best linebacker I have ever coached."
Even from someone whose first language is hyperbole like Andy Talley, that's especially pretty high praise. 

2014 player wearing his number: Corey Majors

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