Let’s take a look back at former Clemson football and NFL safety Leomont Evans in our Throwback Thursday feature.
Word travels so fast these days with this little invention called the internet. Breaking news that was once reported on the 6 o’clock news, is old by the time they get to report on it. With the fast paced society that we live in, 24 hour news channels, 24 hour sports news channels, the weather channel, the list goes on; most information that we seek is at our fingertips.
It’s not only news related items. In my line of work it seems like I have to stay connected 24/7. I relish the days when I can just get away from it all. I like to unwind and sometimes reflect on good times, reminisce on the days when things were not so busy.
So with that general theme of reflecting. I wanted to share a little ‘Throwback Thursday’ spotlight on one of my favorite players from seasons past. Today I’m going to re-introduce you to former Clemson and NFL Safety, Leomont Evans.
Leomont was born and raised in Abbeville (Abby-Ville), South Carolina. A quaint southern town of about 6,000. Football is king in Abbeville and Leomont is a big part of that legend. A running back in high school, Leomont played on the Abbeville Panthers 1991 AA State Championship team.
He started to get the attention of D-I coaching staffs, and was recruited to Clemson where he played under former Tiger head coach Ken Hatfield his freshman and sophomore seasons. Leomont was a special teams contributor his freshman year, while developing his craft as a free safety.
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A starter his sophomore season, #16 for the Tigers was part of a very special defensive backfield. Leomont and Brian Dawkins played side by side for the rest of his time in Tiger Town. On New Years Eve in 1993, the Tigers were playing in the Peach Bowl versus Kentucky.
It was newly named head coach Tommy West’s first game as the head honcho, and what a thriller it was. Evans, Dawkins, Brentson Buckner, Tim Jones and a host of other Tigers put together a memorable goal line stand to keep the Wildcats out of the endzone, eventually winning the Peach Bowl 14-13.
Evans would continue to be a mainstay in the Tigers defensive backfield. So much so, that he was garnering attention from NFL scouts. An 8-4 senior season bid farewell to the consistent free safety and he entered his draft papers to the NFL.
The Washington Redskins selected Leomont Evans in the 5th round of the 1996 draft with the 138th overall pick and that small town in South Carolina had their very first NFL alumni. Leomont went on to start for the Redskins for four seasons.
He played in 59 games with the Skins collecting 152 tackles, a sack, 2 fumble recoveries, 3 interceptions and 23 passes defended. Evans signed with the Texans in 2002 and suffered what many thought was a paralyzing hit on national TV, in a pre-season game against the New York Giants. Luckily, he only bruised his spine, and while he was forced into retirement, he’s leading a normal and healthy post football life.
So while you read the headlines each morning about today’s stars. Keep in mind that there were players like Leomont Evans who paved the way for the success that the Tigers enjoy today. You can also see Leomont Evans Jr, who committed to play at South Carolina State this season. He’s also a Safety. The apple doesn’t fall far from the tree.