I’m an avid sports fan, and I love my sports. Of all the trips, games, meetings and other sports related stuff that has built my engagement to sports, the one item I have that I will NEVER part with is my 1993 edition Dallas Cowboys Emmitt Smith Home Jersey! Please know that I have acquired over 100 jerseys of football players, baseball players, basketball players, and even HOCKEY, but that addiction/ collection all got started because of this number 22. Let me explain.
The very first football game I ever sat down to watch was the Super Bowl with the Dallas Cowboys and the Baltimore Colts. The entire house was full of Colt fans, and I said, “I like that star on those helmets.” The relationship was born. Dallas lost that game, but proceeded to become a lifelong staple in the annals of pro football lore from that game through today. Year in, and year out, I was the biggest Cowboys fan. I learned the roster, watched every game, knew every score….anything Dallas Cowboys, I was part of it. As the years went by, the Cowboys went from powerhouse to doormat. I never gave up. Even in 1989, when the ‘Boys were a 1-15 team, I celebrated the one win, against Washington! I knew good times would come back.
In the early 90s, they bounced back! Dallas won the Super Bowl in 1992, and was on their way to repeating in ’93. My brother William was in the Navy and a world traveler at the time, saw an authentic game jersey of Emmitt Smith on sale,while visiting Texas. It was white, with blue numbering, just like what we see on TV! Knowing my feelings, he bought it for me, and it arrived Super Bowl week, 1993. THEY WON AGAIN!!! I was so overjoyed, that I started collecting jerseys ever since. Kareem Abdul Jabbar, Magic Johnson, Brett Favre, Michael Jordan, Bob Gibson, Jackie Robinson, Wayne Gretsky, you name it, I probably have it. I even own a replica of the pitcher to throw the opening game for the Arizona Diamondbacks! (Andy Benes, in case you didn’t want to Google that.)
I’ve bought and sold many a jersey, but I will never part with my Emmitt. Never been worn….stored in a frame and the centerpiece of my Dallas mancave. Only been out of that frame one time, when I flew to Dallas in 2002, to see the Cowboys play the New York Giants. Emmitt Smith was closing in on the all time rushing title, and I had it figured out that the Giants game he would break the record. So I took it to the game, flying from Louisville KY to Dallas and back alone, just to see history. jersey in hand, I was at Texas Stadium 2 hours before gametime. Didn’t see Emmitt before the game, and to make matters worse, they lost and Emmitt was mere yards short of the record. The very next week, against Seattle, the record fell. Emmitt was my hero, and his jersey became my favorite memento for all time.