Citing game's violence, Bo Jackson says he 'would have never played football'

Bo Jackson was one of the greatest athletes of the 20th century, competing at the highest level in both football and baseball. But knowing what he does now about the violence of the game, Jackson says he would have never played football and would steer his kids to other sports like baseball, basketball or soccer.

"If I knew back then what I know now,'' Jackson told USA Today, "I would have never played football. Never. I wish I had known about all of those head injuries, but no one knew that. And the people that did know that, they wouldn't tell anybody. The game has gotten so violent, so rough. We're so much more educated on this CTE stuff [chronic traumatic encephalopathy], there's no way I would ever allow my kids to play football today."

It's an alarming quote from one of the best college football players, a Heisman Trophy winner and Auburn legend. Jackson has remained close to the game as a passionate supporter of the Tigers and by making appearances at events like the 14th annual Professional Baseball Scouts Foundation, which brought about this interview and quote.

At the same time, Jackson, 54, noted that he "wouldn't change a thing" about his career. "The man upstairs had a plan of the way of working things out," he told USA Today.

CBS Sports Writer

Chip Patterson has spent his young career covering college sports from the Old North State. He's been writing and talking about football and basketball for CBS Sports since 2010. You may have heard him... Full Bio

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