Joe Thomas Sr. is not your average senior college football player.

In fact, he’s actually a senior. As in age.


At 55, Thomas is attempting to become the oldest athlete ever to play in a college football game when South Carolina State plays Savannah State today.

The walk-on has not played in a game during his four years at the university. Thomas has done most of his work on the scout team playing running back and linebacker.

Thomas was placed on the active roster against Norfolk State, but did not play because the game was still in doubt.

South Carolina State head coach Buddy Pough said he wants to put Thomas in a game, because “it would mean the world to him.”

“And it would be special to our fans,” Pough told Sports Illustrated.

The veteran head coach said a special play has been drawn up for Thomas the team will run whenever the opportunity presents itself.

“If we get a possibility to put him on the field, we well,” Pough said.

What would it mean for Thomas, whose son, Joe Thomas Jr., plays for the Green Bay Packers to finally step on the field?

“I can just imagine myself running free,” he said.

Kendrick Marshall
Editor for HBCU Sports, award-winning journalist, and a graduate of Jackson State University.

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