Stanford to retire John Elway's No. 7 jersey


Stanford will retire John Elway's No. 7 jersey, making him the third Cardinal football player ever to be so honored, the school announced Tuesday.

"I am extremely humbled that Stanford has chosen to recognize me in this very special way," Elway said in a statement. "It's a tremendous honor to join Cardinal legends Ernie Nevers and Jim Plunkett with this distinction."

Elway, who serves as the executive vice president of the Denver Broncos, will be recognized at halftime of Stanford's highly anticipated Nov. 7 home game against Oregon.

In four seasons at Stanford, Elway threw for 9,349 yards and a then-conference record 77 touchdowns. Elways, a two-time Pac-10 Player of the Year, was an All-American as a senior and elected to the College Football Hall of Fame in 2000.

For all his achievements on The Farm, Elway was never able to get Stanford to a bowl game. In 1982, Stanford needed to win the Big Game against rival California to make the postseason, only for Elway's college career to end on the five-lateral kickoff return touchdown known forever as The Play.

Andy Geiger, Stanford athletic director at the time, told Stanford Magazine "that game cost John the Heisman Trophy," as Elway would finish second in the voting to Georgia running back Herschel Walker.

Elway would make up for it by leading the Broncos to wins in Super Bowl XXXII and XXXIII, ending his professional career in 1999 as Super Bowl MVP.

Follow Dan Greenspan on Twitter @DanGreenspan.

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