As we approach Senior Night and tournament time, this may seem like a strange time for a football post, but it appears that former Hoosier quarterback Trent Green, who has been the Chiefs’ starter since 2001, may be on his way out in Kansas City. The Chiefs signed backup Damon Huard, who played well during Green’s extended injury absence in 2006, to a multi-year contract. I was a freshman during Green’s senior season at IU, in 1992. After a solid junior year and a Copper Bowl win (still IU’s last bowl win), Green and the Hoosiers struggled to a 5-6 record, and Green was the designated whipping boy. The low point was when at halftime of a 14-0 loss to Iowa on Parents’ Weekend, Green’s parents were booed when they were introduced. Ugly, ugly, ugly. I thought at the time that Green was getting too much of the blame, but I wish I could say that I foresaw that Green, who was one of the last players chosen in the 1993 NFL Draft, didn’t take a snap until his fifth year as a pro, and didn’t start a game until his sixth year, would still be going strong 15 years after leaving IU. I have always wondered if that lack of playing time (and hard hits) in his first five years has allowed him to play effectively in his mid and late 30s.
Of course, the story has another IU connection. According to the South Florida Sun Sentinel, the Miami Dolphins, now coached by former IU coach Cam Cameron, are interested in Green. Green and Cameron didn’t cross paths at IU, but who would have guessed, considering that neither guy exactly departed IU on top, that they might be together as head coach and QB in the NFL in 2007?