Tillman one of many seniors to fill ranks
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Tillman one of many seniors to fill ranks

AFAN: Air Force, Army, Navy newsletter on Navy wide receiver Jamir Tillman

Photo: Jamir Tillman

Navy’s Jamir Tillman should have felt the weight of the world like an elephant jumped on his shoulders coming into this season. He was the offense’s only returning starter from a team that finished 11-2 and ranked No. 18 in the nation.

Imagine that leadership responsibility at Alabama, Ohio State or Notre Dame. Imagine the apprehension seeping into coaches Nick Saban, Urban Meyer and Brian Kelly if their one returning starter wasn’t much of a leader. Imagine if that player shrunk from the demanding role and instead looked ahead to protect his NFL future. ... 

Click here for the rest of my FanRagSports.com story

Tom Shanahan

Tom Shanahan

Tom Shanahan is an award-winning sportswriter and the author of "Raye of Light". Tom spent the bulk of his career in San DIego writing for the San Diego Union-Tribune. He has covered NCAA Tournaments, Super Bowls, Rose Bowls, the NBA Finals and the World Series in a career that included writing for Voice of San Diego, the San Diego Hall of Champions and Chargers.com. He contributes to the Detroit Free Press, Raleigh News & Observer, MLB.com, Rivals.com and the National Football Foundation's Football Matters. He won multiple first-place awards from the San Diego Press Club and first place from the Copley News Service Ring of Truth Awards. The National Football Foundation/San Diego Chapter presented him its Distinguished American Award in 2003. USA Track and Field’s San Diego Chapter presented its President’s Award in 2000.

Raye of Light: Jimmy Raye, Duffy Daugherty, the integration of college football and the 1965-66 Michigan State Spartans. It explains Duffy Daugherty's pioneering role and debunks myths that steered recognition away from him to Bear Bryant.

By Tom Shanahan; Foreword by Tony Dungy; August Publications

David Maraniss, Pulitzer Prize winner and biographer: "History writes people out of the story. It's our job to write them back in."