The skinny on Burt Reynolds’ football career from Wikipedia and www.wikipedia.com:
(The N.C. State Wolfpack made/left a strong impression on the young Mr. Reynolds.)
During 10th grade at Palm Beach High School, in Florida, Reynolds was named First Team All State and All Southern as a fullback, and received multiple scholarship offers. After graduating from Palm Beach High, he attended Florida State University on a football scholarship and played halfback.
While at Florida State, he roomed with college football broadcaster and analyst Lee Corso, and also became a brother of the Phi Delta Theta fraternity. He hoped to be named to All-American teams and have a career in professional football, but he injured his knee in the first game of his sophomore season, and later that year lost his spleen and injured his other knee by a car accident.
These injuries hampered his abilities on the field, and after being beaten in coverage for the game-winning touchdown in a 7-0 loss to North Carolina State on October 12, 1957, he decided to give up football.
Ending his college football career, Reynolds thought of becoming a police officer, but his father suggested he finish college and become a parole officer. To keep up with his studies, he began taking classes at Palm Beach Junior College (PBJC) in neighboring Lake Park. In his first term at PBJC, he was in an English class taught by Watson B. Duncan III. Duncan pushed him into trying out for a play he was producing, Outward Bound. He cast him in the lead role based on having heard him read Shakespeare in class, leading to his winning the 1956 Florida State Drama Award for his performance. In his autobiography, he refers to Duncan as his mentor and the most influential person in his life…
Then on to his acting career with The Longest Yard, multiple editions and renditions of Smokey and The Bandit, Gunsmoke, Dan August, Evening Shade and more TV shows and movies for Burt Reynolds…
Burt Reynolds:February 11, 1936-September 6, 2018
RIP Burt Reynolds