Jim Brown. Ernie Davis. Floyd Little.
We'll actually get to find out now that Syracuse Orange Athletics has officially re-instated the storied number 44 for Syracuse Football.
It's back pic.twitter.com/gZAXOztdwd— Syracuse Football (@CuseFootball) May 19, 2015
The announcement came in the closing moments of a press conference to unveil the brand-new Plaza 44, which will eventually include statues of the three legendary No. 44s.
Interim AD Pete Sala, former AD DOC Gross, SU football head coach Scott Shafer, SU football legend Floyd Little and others spoke at length about the legacy of 44 and the way it's not just a number but also a "culture." As things wrapped up, it looks like we might be getting a Grade A troll job but Sala returned to the mic to announce that the number, which Syracuse retired in 2005, was back and officially available for any player (cough cough Robert Washington cough cough) who wants to wear it.
John had a feeling this was going to happen yesterday and thankfully it went that way after all. It's a no-brainer really. 44 is to Syracuse what The 12th Man is to Texas A&M and dotting the i is to Ohio State. It's our tradition that separates us from everyone else. It deserves to be on the field and honored.
SU will apparently keep the recent tradition of a committee who decides whether or not a player can wear 44. It's probably more ceremonial than anything, because if a guy wants 44 and he's good enough, he's gonna get it.
Sala said there'll be a committee put together for awarding 44. Small group that will include Floyd Little.— Stephen Bailey (@Stephen_Bailey1) May 19, 2015
We've got time to work out the kinks but, for now, it's great news to have 44 back in the rotation. Let's go make some new legends, shall we?