Oregon State running back gets national attention

Quizz Show
2009-08-27T09:45:00Z Oregon State running back gets national attentionBy Kevin Hampton, Gazette-Times reporter Corvallis Gazette Times

Jacquizz Rodgers was having a hard time keeping a straight face.

Rodgers was doing his usual set of interviews after Oregon State football practice, this one a taping for ESPNU.

No problem, except Lyle Moevao had crept up behind the interviewer/camera operator and was slowly pulling up his jersey and threatening to go into a striptease.

Rodgers broke up and had to stop the interview for a moment.

It's just one of the trials of a celebrity college athlete.

Once that status is attained, what was an occasional quick talk with local media blooms into a full-on media blitz.

Everyone wants a few minutes. National Web sites. ESPN. Sports Illustrated. Other national TV networks, newspapers, magazines and sports sites.

It can be overwhelming for any college athlete. For Rodgers it all began last year during his freshman season with OSU's 27-21 win over top-ranked Southern California.

Rodgers tore through the Trojans for 186 yards on 37 carries and two touchdowns to lead the Beavers.

Suddenly, he was a star.

"That was a big game and we upset the number one team and I had a pretty decent game, so that's when it all started," Rodgers said. "I just remember all my friends taking pictures off the TV and sending them to me, things like that."

It was a breakout game for Rodgers, but he wasn't a one-game wonder. He went on to rush for 1,253 yards and 11 touchdowns.

He stayed in the national media's spotlight.

"It was a little bit crazy, getting a chance to talk to ESPN, being in SI magazine, because that's stuff you see as a kid and when you're actually in it, it's like, 'I'm in it!' " Rodgers said. "But I don't take it to the head, I just try to stay humble."

Rodgers is considered to be among the top running backs in the nation going into this season.

The publicity just keeps coming.

People want his time and he's recognized when he goes out and about.

Some is fun to do. There's a Quiz with Quizz on John Canzano's radio show, the Bald Faced Truth.

"I get on there and he asks me questions," Rodgers said. "He asks me five questions. If I get it right, he's like, ding, ding, ding and if I get it wrong, it's like, (makes buzzer sound)."

Some isn't so fun. Mostly, it's part of a daily grind.

"Some days after practice, it's like if you've had a long week you're just ready to go in and just eat lunch and some days you might not feel like doing the interview," Rodgers said.

It's not likely Rodgers will ever get a big head over the spotlight. If he even shows the slightest of signs, his brother will shut it down.

James Rodgers, who has received his share of publicity at receiver for his fly sweep, said he was a little surprised that Jacquizz was able to show his abilities as a freshman, but knew eventually he would be a top running back and facing the media on a regular basis.

He had faith Jacquizz would stay humble.

"Growing up, that's just how we were taught to be, just to be humble no matter how much fame you get or anything and that was the main thing, just being humble," James Rodgers said. "He pretty much knew everything when he got up here. He knew to be humble."

James is all too happy to see all those highlights of his brother on TV.

"I think it's very nice," he said. "I don't really get to see him make too many moves during a game because I'm blocking for him. So when I get a chance to see a little highlights, I like watching them."

Copyright 2014 Corvallis Gazette Times. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

No Comments Posted.

Add Comment
You must Login to comment.

Click here to get an account it's free and quick