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Anthony Dixon turns down $24K from Asomugha for No. 24

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SANTA CLARA -- After working hard to achieve No. 24 as a rookie in the NFL, running back Anthony Dixon was not going to give up his uniform number for a few dollars. Or, in this case, $24,000.

Veteran cornerback Nnamdi Asomugha offered Dixon that hefty sum of money to take over as No. 24 on the 49ers. But Dixon said he would not allowed No. 24 to be bought off his back. "We tried to go $24K for 24, but I told him, 'No, I'm going to keep my 24," Dixon said on Tuesday.

When Asomugha came to the 49ers in the offseason, he asked Dixon if he could also wear No. 24 during training camp. Asomugha wore No. 21 for eight seasons in Oakland, and No. 24 during two seasons in Philadelphia.

The 49ers have 12 retired numbers, and nobody has worn No. 97 since Bryant Young's retirement after the 2007 season. And with 90 players on training camp rosters, there are several numbers that are duplicated on offense and defense.

"When he first got here, he asked me what I thought of him wearing No. 24, and I said, 'Well, you can wear it,'" Dixon said. "I wanted him to look good. He asked if he could wear it so he doesn't look like a bum. Every other number was already taken."

The No. 24 holds significance to Dixon, who was issued No. 33 when he arrived with the 49ers in 2010 as a sixth-round draft pick. Fullback Michael Robinson already had No. 24.

Dixon, in essence, beat out Robinson for a roster spot. And, then, Dixon claimed the number just prior to the start of the regular season.

"I worked hard to get that number when I first got here," Dixon said. "I worked hard to get it off somebody else. I've been No. 24 since high school and college."

Asomugha continued his quest to claim No. 24 on Tuesday. But Dixon told him, "I'm not ready to sell it, yet."

Asomugha, who earned a roster spot as the 49ers' third cornerback, was issued No. 28.

- Matt Maiocco, CSN Bay Area

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