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Rutgers to retire LeGrand's No. 52

The SportsXchange

Former Rutgers University football player Eric LeGrand will have his No. 52 retired early this season, the first number retired by the school in its 144-year football history.

The ceremony is scheduled for Sept. 14, when Eastern Michigan visits High Point Solutions Stadium.

"What an honor thank you @RFootball this means the world to me," LeGrand tweeted.

LeGrand was paralyzed from the neck down after making a tackle in a game Oct. 16, 2010, but vows to walk again one day. The No. 52 jersey has been worn once since that play, but LeGrand's close friend, Khaseem Greene.

"His reaction was very typical Eric. 'Coach, I was wondering when you were going to do that?'" head coach Kyle Flood told The Asbury Park Press, with a laugh. "He was very flattered by the honor. I believe that he deserves it.

"The one caveat that I put on it with him is I've been around Eric enough to know that he makes this statement quite often -- he's going to go back to the stadium to where it happened and he's going to get up from that spot and walk off the field. I told him, 'I know you're going to do that, too, and when you do it, I'm going to unretire your jersey.' And then that number will become a significant number in our program again to be worn only on special occasions by certain people. And there is no doubt in my mind that that day will come."
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