John Ryan of the SAN JOSE MERCURY NEWS reports that wide receiver Isaac Bruce, recently acquired by the 49ers, is considering wearing Jerry Rice’s offically retired #80 when he takes the field next season.
Rice has ok’d the possibility though a final decision has yet to be made. We’re surprised Rice signed off on Bruce wearing his number, considering the Hall of Famer’s own experience wearing a hallowed numeral.
When Rice was going through the motions at the end of his career, he somehow suited up for Seattle - and wore #80 for the Seahawks.
That number also happened to belong to the greatest player in Seattle franchise history, Steve Largent. And Seahawks fans reportedly were none to pleased about the numeric slight incurred by Rice’s decision - despite Largent’s blessing.
From afar, we think it’s no big deal. Until someone were to do the same to one of the famous numbers of our favorite teams. We’re Royals fans and we can’t imagine anyone ever wearing George Brett’s #5. Or as an alumnus of the Univ. of Georgia, we shudder to think someone would be allowed Herschel Walker’s #34.