It’s good to see that Heath Shuler is getting paid to do what he’s being doing for years – acting. Representing North Carolina’s 11th congressional district in the U.S. House of Representatives from 2007-13, Shuler perfected the ability to act as if he cared about serving his constituents. He supposedly was an NFL quarterback in the mid-1990s, but that was all an act too. Prior to the 1994 Draft, Shuler generally was considered the best prospect at quarterback. He was taken by Washington with the 3rd overall pick that year but failed to live up to expectations. During his NFL career, the former Tennessee Volunteer threw more than twice as many interceptions (33) as touchdowns (15) and compiled an underwhelming 8-14 record as a starter. After four unsuccessful seasons, his act got old so his football days ended. Given his success in college and failure in the NFL, it’s no surprise that Shuler would reminisce about his glory days in a commercial for Dish Network. Come to think of it, that’s the least acting he’s had to do in the last 20 years.
In the late 1980s and early 1990s, two quarterbacks from the University of Houston shattered numerous passing records. The first, Andre Ware, won the 1989 Heisman trophy after throwing for 4,700 yards and 46 touchdowns. The second, David Klingler, threw for 5,100 yards and 54 touchdowns the following season. Based on those numbers, Klingler made the cover of Sports Illustrated’s 1991 College Football issue. I’ve heard of the SI Jinx, but that cover proved to be ironically prophetic given the headline of “Bombs Away!” As a senior, Klingler’s passing yardage declined by over one-third and his touchdowns declined by almost one-half. Still considered a top QB prospect, Klingler went sixth overall to the Cincinnati Bengals. With an abysmal 4-20 record as a starter and career totals of only 4,000 yards and 16 touchdowns, he appropriately became my #9 NFL Draft Bust.
Just like Dr. Jekyll had Mr. Hyde, Brian Bosworth had The Boz, an alter-ego who was a larger-than-life personality living inside a football player’s body. Unlike Jekyll and Hyde, however, Bosworth (the athlete) and Boz (the media sensation) weren’t split personalities but rather one and the same. As a marketing major in college, Bosworth understood the importance of building a brand and The Boz was his brand. The following post goes through the epic rise and fall of one of the most hyped superstars in college football history. By the end, you may not like him more than you currently do, but you should respect him more.