Found January 28, 2013 on
A lot of people use disappointment, heartache and someone not wanting them as fuel to spark success in their life. San Francisco 49ers All-Pro linebacker Patrick Willis wasn’t always that dominating middle linebacker you see today.
Willis is from Bruceton, Tennessee, and as you can guess he wanted so bad to be a Volunteer. Disappointingly, Tennessee never came calling. Willis admits to the Tennessean that it crushed him.
“Yes I did. I was a Vols fan growing up. That was like America’s Team. I wanted to go there so bad. After every (high school) game my dad and I would get in the car and drive five hours to go to Knoxville to watch them play on an unofficial visit. This was on our gas money and our time. I just wanted to show them how bad I wanted to be there,” Willis said. “I can’t forget being there and you have all these other big-time recruits there and they are shaking their hands and the coaches are talking to them. The coaches never shook my hand. They never talked to me. One day I just got tired of doing that. My senior year, I remember going up and saying, ‘Coach I see all of the other guys getting love. I really want to come here. I’m interested in coming here. Do you have something for me? Maybe a scholarship offer? Maybe something just saying you want me?’ ”
Willis eventually became an All-American at Ole Miss, and hindsight being what it is, it worked out well for him.
I’ll never forget getting in the car with my foster dad and we’re riding home and I cried. I cried, not because I was sad, but more so because I knew how badly I wanted to be a Tennessee Vol. I knew what type of player I could be,” Willis said. “I’m sorry that I didn’t go to a 5A school. I’m sorry that I wasn’t in a town that could be recognized, but we are what we are. We are in the situation that we’re in. The good Lord had a plan for me. I ended up going to Ole Miss. I went there and had a blast and had a great time playing football there. Here I am all these years later. The Lord had a plan for me.”
Misses like this by Tennessee could explain why they are where they are in the SEC right now, and why they’re in debt. I did some research, and the best linebacker on their roster during Willis’ time at Ole Miss was Jerod Mayo, who’s been a pretty good linebacker for the New England Patriots, but nowhere near the class of Willis.
BEST OF MAXIM
AROUND THE WEB
A lot of people use disappointment, heartache, and someone not wanting them as fuel to spark success in their life. San Francisco 49ers All Pro linebacker Patrick Willis wasn’t always the dominating middle linebacker you see today.
Willis is from Bruceton, Tennessee, and as you can guess He wanted so bad to be a Vol. To disappointment and obviously something that pushed him...
The San Francisco 49ers' former starting quarterback Alex Smith is expected to seek his release before free agency, according to Pro Football Talk.
Smith, who lost the starting job to Colin Kaepernick in Week 10, would prefer to be released so he can garner the full benefits of free agency, the report says.
The 49ers aren't likely to release Smith because of his value in...
Technically, the San Francisco 49ers are the home team in Super Bowl XLVII, and as grand arrivals go, their landing in New Orleans on an unseasonably warm Sunday evening was rather calm and unassuming. Players casually walked off the team plane dressed in casual attire, minus handheld video recorders recording the moment. Nobody waved to the crowd. They offered no real hint of the...
Randy Moss finally got his fourth second chance, and he plans to make the most of it.
Mike Florio of Pro Football Talk reports that Moss plans to play at least another year after the 49ers and Ravens face each other in the Super Bowl this Sunday.
The 49ers signed Moss this season after the veteran wide receiver spent more than a year out of the game. He had failed to draw interest...
Randy Moss was asked about his future as well as his current role with the 49ers during media day on Tuesday.
Moss seemed to suggest that he doesn’t want to be back with the 49ers next season.
“I don’t like my role,” said Moss of his role with the 49ers, per Tom Curran. “I really don’t.”
In regards to being back in San Francisco next season, Moss simply responded with ”next...
Randy Moss used to be a star. Now, he's just an afterthought with the San Francisco 49ers.
It's a role he's still struggling to accept.
Moss spent much of his career as one of the NFL's top receivers. During Super Bowl media day on Tuesday, he called himself ''the greatest receiver ever to do it.'' That's a claim sure to be debated in NFL circles...
Aldon Smith was among several players preparing for the Super Bowl who doesn't see anything wrong with their kids playing football.
Responding to President Obama's comments questioning the safety of the game, the 49ers' All-Pro linebacker and a few teammates said they'd allow their sons to follow them into the sport.
''It's not like we signed up and...
Watching 49ers backup quarterback Alex Smith walking around the field on Super Bowl #mediaday was just about the most depressing storyline of the day. That picture above just sums it all up.
In an interview on the NFL Network, Deion Sanders expressed his dissatisfaction that Smith did not have a podium position among the other “important” players below]. Sanders really drove...
The latest reports to come out during Superbowl week is that Randy Moss would like to play one more year and the 49ers would love to have Randy Moss back.
Jim Harbaugh is already on record stating that the 49ers would love to bring back Randy Moss next year and a report from Pro Football Talk eludes to the fact that Randy wants to play one more year.
Adam Schefter mentions this on...
Rapid Eye Media writers and staff give you their predictions on Super Bowl xlvi between the Baltimore Ravens and the San Francisco 49ers. The Ravens dominate the women picks while most of the guys are picking the Niners. Will Joe Flacco be the worst quarterback to win a Super Bowl since fellow Raven Trent Dilfer? [...]
Withe the regular season in the books and only one game left to play, I figured this would be a good time to discuss the major awards for the 2012 season and who should win them, as well as who will. I’m a defense guy, so I think I’ll kick off this series with the defensive player of the year. First, the candidates.
Aldon Smith, OLB, San Francisco 49ers
After a stellar season...