Thursday, March 31, 2011

Life In The NFL: History-Making Spurlock

We continue to take a look at our former Rebel stars that will be on hand for "Life in the NFL," an awards ceremony and panel discussion on the NFL on Grove Bowl Saturday at 11 a.m. on the Grove Stage. Next up is Micheal Spurlock.

After posting 4,509 total yards and 45 TDs as a senior quarterback at Gentry High School in Indianola, expectations were high for Spurlock when he arrived in Oxford in 2001. When he got his opportunity, he had elephant-size shoes to fill, having to follow the great Eli Manning as the Rebels' signal caller. Micheal started twice in 2004 and eight games as a senior in 2005, when he passed for 1,709 yards seven touchdowns.

By season's end, it was clear that any future he had in football would be at a new position, and later that spring, Arizona inked him to a free-agent deal as a
running back/wide receiver. Spurlock's only action of his rookie campaign came in the regular-season finale, when he collected four catches for 31 yards.

A year later he arrived in Tampa and secured his status as a cult hero in the Bay area.
It was week 15 of 2007 against division rival Atlanta. With 6:19 remaining in the first quarter, Spurlook took a kickoff 90 yards to the house, breaking a stretch of 1,865 kickoff returns without a touchdown, spanning the Buccaneers' entire 31-year history in the NFL. After spending part of 2009 in San Francisco, Micheal returned to Tampa Bay, and in 2010, he began his emergence as more than just a return specialist. As a wide receiver, Spurlock notched 17 catches for 250 yards and 2 TDs, including the game-winner in the fourth quarter against Cleveland. However, for Bucs fans, he'll always be remembered for "Run, Micheal, Run!"

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