Q&A: George Rogers on the Atlanta Sports Hall of Fame

Former Heisman Trophy winner George Rogers will be one of six people inducted into the Atlanta Sports Hall of Fame on Friday.

Rogers graduated from Duluth High before enrolling at South Carolina, where he rushed for 5,091 yards and 31 touchdowns during his four-year career, capped by the winning college football’s most-prestigious individual honor in 1980.

He was selected No. 1 by the Saints in the 1981 NFL draft and rushed for 7,176 yards and 54 touchdowns in seven seasons. He played for the Redskins in the Super Bowl in 1988.

Rogers will be inducted with Cindy Brogdon, who led Greater Atlanta Christian to three high school basketball state championships; Corky Kell, a longtime Cobb County high school football coach and athletic director; Antonio McKay, a three-time All-American track & field athlete who won two Olympic gold medals; John Smoltz, an eight-time All-Star with the Braves; and Ted Turner, the former owner of the Braves and the Hawks.

Rogers met with The Atlanta Journal-Constitution recently and talked about his induction:

Q: How special is this for you?

A: I think it's great. I'm going on with Ted Turner, John Smoltz … that's a great group.

Q: How many halls of fame have you been inducted into?

A: I'm in a few. South Carolina's, Georgia's, College Football Hall of Fame. It's a testament to all my coaches and all the players that I've played with.

Q: Are you recognized more for your days at the South Carolina or in the NFL?

A: Probably South Carolina and the Heisman. I don't like to play the celebrity role. I like to be more common.

Q: What’s the weirdest interaction you’ve had with a fan?

A: There's a bunch of things. I was in Cherokee (North Carolina) and this nice lady just kept talking to me. I signed (an autograph) for her, and she just kept talking. People were in line waiting and she kept talking. She wouldn't go away. She would not move. She was there 10-15 minutes. What am I supposed to do?

Q: How many friends and family members will be there?

A: I'll have a large group of people there. They will be coming from South Carolina. I will have a lot of people there.

Q: What will be the theme of your speech?

A: My speech won't be very long. I will thank my high school coach and all the football players I played with. Then I'll sit down. I won't make a long speech.

Q: When you’re young and you start to realize that you are athletically gifted, when do you start thinking about halls of fame?

A: I couldn't tell you. I guess it comes along with the territory I guess. It's awfully nice that someone is still thinking about you at the age of 55. It's good to be recognized.