School: Michigan State University
Sports: Baseball, Football
The man who hit a World Series home run so famous it has its own Wikipedia page never would’ve hobbled his way up to that batter’s box if he didn’t play college football (hold up…what?).
It’s true. You see, Kirk Gibson was an All-American wide receiver at Michigan State who established team and conference records before being picked by the (now) Arizona Cardinals in the seventh round of the 1979 NFL Draft. But, while still a Spartan, Gibson’s football coach suggested Kirk play baseball. After a single year at the collegiate level, the Detroit Tigers selected Gibson in the first round of their draft. Since he was college educated, Kirk knew first was better than seventh. He chose baseball over football, which eventually led to—you guessed it—nightmares for life, for Dennis Eckersley.