The reasons Aaron Rodgers went to a junior college

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The reasons Aaron Rodgers went to a junior college. What if Aaron Rodgers had gotten to play college ball at FSU or if any division 1 school had recruited him? It wasn’t hard to see his talent but nobody would watch him. WTF!

High School

Aaron Rodgers is 6’2, 225 pounds. Many think he has the best physical skillset of any quarterback to ever play the game. I’m one of those people.

Aaron Rodgers at Pleasant Valley

Is Rodgers release quicker than Dan Marino’s was? I’m not going into all that. He has the best mixture of scrambling, arm strength, accuracy, I.Q, etc.

If you don’t agree with me, you don’t have to? What do I know anyway?

Listen to interviews from some of the best defenders in the NFL, as they talk about him. They always talk about how Rodgers can do things on the field that no one else can.

It wasn’t always that way though. Rodgers attended Pleasant Valley High School in Chico California.

Pleasant Valley

Rodgers started high school at 5’3 and was 6’0, 180 pounds as a senior. He set records in his two years starting at Pleasant Valley high school, including the school record for passing yards. Aaron was named to the all-section team as a Senior. Why didn’t any college programs seem to care?

Only Florida State

Aaron Rodgers simply wanted to play for Bobby Bowden at Florida State. He was turned away from Tallahassee. No other division 1 teams made an offer to Rodgers either.

Aaron Rodgers playing football in high school
Rodgers playing at Pleasant Valley

Entering his freshman year of college, he stood 6’2, 200 pounds. His progression from a freshman in high school went something like this.

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  • Freshman 5’3
  • Sophomore 5’7
  • H.S Junior 5’10
  • H.S Senior 6’0
  • College Fr 6’2

Rodgers went to a camp at the University of Illinois. It’s said that he was the best quarterback there. He was offered a walk-on spot with Illinois, and the opportunity to earn a scholarship. He didn’t pass the eye test at the time. It seems that this occurred sometime around his junior season. He would grow two more inches and put on 15 pounds before his senior season.

Butte community college

Aaron Rodgers went to college at Butte Community College since no team would guarantee him a scholarship. He threw 26 Touchdowns and led Butte to a conference title and had his team ranked 2nd nationally with a 10-1 season record.

Aaron Rodgers led his team to the NorCal conference championship as a true freshman. If it wasn’t for some luck being on his side, Aaron Rodgers may have had to continue playing football at a junior college.

Aaron Rodgers playing college football at Butte

Cal-Berkeley

University of California head coach Jeff Tedford was recruiting the Butte tight end, when he saw a tape of Rodgers after the 2002 season. Nobody in division 1 was purposely recruiting Rodgers even at this point.

I remember

The first memory I have of Aaron Rodgers in college was during the 2003 Insight Bowl vs. Virginia Tech. That was his Sophomore season. He didn’t have to wait two seasons to transfer because of his grades prior to going to junior college.

Aaron Rodgers playing college football at California

Folks, I don’t know exactly what Aaron Rodgers was the two years prior to this but in his first season in division 1, he was the Aaron Rodgers we know today.

In this bowl game that he was the MVP. He was 27-35/77.1%/394 yds/2 td-0 int/190.6 rate.

Aaron Rodgers threw for 5,469 yards in his two seasons for the University of California Golden Bears.

His college career ended after the 2005 Holiday Bowl. Aaron Rodgers would declare for the 2005 NFL Draft.

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It didn’t take much watching him to see he was a special player.

What Ya Thinking?

What were all these coaches and recruiters thinking? It seems they’re taking shortcuts. Is it laziness or is the expertise to recruit talent just unavailable to them?

What’s the process for the websites that rank these players anyway? If a player isn’t elite after his sophomore season of high school, what’s the point of watching any more film on him after that?

Do the coaching staffs not recruit or evaluate talent anymore? Are the coaches solely just depending on the recruiting services now-a-days?

Websites

If Rivals.com doesn’t rank you, you’re evidently screwed. Aaron Rodgers was playing at a hall-of-fame level his first season at Cal-Berkeley, but a year prior to that the 6’2 Super Bowl MVP couldn’t get a single school to give him a scholarship.

If any of the people in charge of any of the college football programs in America had watched Rodgers on tape, they would not only have offered him a scholarship but named him the teams starting quarterback. That’s how good he was then. He was Aaron Rodgers. An average fan could spot his talent in just a few minutes.

There can only be two possible reasons that Aaron Rodgers was stuck at a junior college, either the coaches and their recruiters are bad at evaluating talent or they don’t even begin to look at tape on a player unless they are ranked by websites like scouts.com or rivals.com.

Chris Rix

Aaron Rodgers wanted to play at Florida State. This was the era of Chris Rix. If FSU had stronger quarterback play during this time, they could have been a factor nationally.

Aaron was more than dependable. Everything else was in place at FSU, all the way down the depth chart. The Noles won the ACC in 2003 without Aaron Rodgers. Not saying FSU would have won a national title but they would have been a contender. Bowden should have given him Rix’s scholarship.

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Packers

Rodgers accomplished as much as anyone could have with the Golden Bears, experts expected him to be drafted much higher than he was.

He was the last man in the green room. Rodgers sat there waiting to be drafted for more than four hours. It was an awkward situation for Rodgers and for the NFL.

When he was finally drafted, the workers in the arena had already started cleaning up the room. Some thought he should’ve been the first pick of the draft, but scouts had slept on him again.

A-Rod was drafted with the 24th pick of the 2005 NFL Draft by the Green Bay Packers. He sat behind Brett Favre for three seasons before being named the Green Bay Packers starting quarterback.

Since being named the Packers starter, he’s won a Super Bowl, three NFL MVP awards, passed for 51,245 yards, with a career passer rating of 103.9, and has thrown 412 touchdown passes.

Never Stopped

When Rodgers declared for the draft after his junior season. NFL teams started inquiring why he wasn’t recruited at all coming out of high school.

They thought there was something wrong with him, like his intelligence or personality was an issue. The reason Rodgers dropped in the draft, is even after teams were reassured, they feared there was a problem with him.

Now they know, the problem wasn’t Aaron Rodgers. It was everyone evaluating him. From Chico, California, the journey from Aaron Rodgers high school career to NFL legend has been undervalued and miscalculated in the eyes of those evaluating his talent.

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