I watched a recent College Football Live video where the anchors talk about whether Taysom Hill is too old to play college football. Jesse Palmer says no, Desmond Howard says yes. Here are my thoughts:
Hill turned 26 on the day BYU announced him as their starting QB for the 2016 season. Making him about five months older than me. I graduated college in 2013, I was 22 years old. BYU, however, already breaks the mold on this. Being an LDS school, most members of their athletic teams attend a two-year mission before freshman year. Making them 20/21 years old as freshman. Are they actively playing sports and bulking up on these missions, my guess is no. I’m not LDS, but from what I’ve seen, these two years involve a lot of walking around, talking with others, and not a lot of time to be spent in a weight room, or meal prepping. So if anything, I’d say some athletes might lose a bit of talent or ability that they hopefully regain as “freshman’.
In his time spent with the Cougars, Hill only had one full season. That was in 2013 (three years ago) where he racked up 2,938 yards and 19 touchdowns. In 2014, Hill fractured his leg during the Utah State game (Oct. 3) ending his season. Then, game one of 2015, Hill suffered a lisfranc fracture (foot) against Nebraska, costing him the rest of the season.
So the debate now: Is it okay to have grown men playing against boys?
My thoughts, yes.
I don’t believe age always defines ability. I’ve seen some massive 17 year olds playing in high school football games that seemingly looked unfair, only because their muscle mass was double that of any other teammate.
Take a look at former Baylor Defensive End Shawn Oakman.
6’8, 287lbs who crushed quarterbacks, etc at only 23 years old. Would a 26 year old Taysom Hill want to be sacked by that? I doubt it.
How about Alabama’s RB Bo Scarbrough?
He’s a 6’2 sophomore from Tuscaloosa County and weighs 228lbs. As a true freshman, he rushed for 104yds on 18 carries. SOPHOMORE.
And just for good measure I’ll mention Utah transfer Karsen Liljenquist. You may remember a story I did on him during the summer. He’s a sophomore who bench-pressed 225lbs 38 times (more than any athlete in the 2016 NFL Combine).
My point is, age doesn’t define ability. You could be 20 years old and have the same amount of talent as a 26 year old. Oh, and by the way, the oldest person to ever play football, 61 year old Alan Moore — kicked an extra point for NAIA Faulkner in its season opener LAST YEAR.
I for one am looking forward to watching Hill play this season. But I’m supposed to, I’m a sports reporter.