Daily Sports Smile: Lamar Jackson honored with special day, street in Louisville

Lamar Jackson celebrates at midfield as his jersey number is officially retired Saturday afternoon at halftime of the U of L and Syracuse game. Nov. 13, 2021
Jaylon Thompson
USA TODAY Sports+

NFL superstar Lamar Jackson returned to a hero’s welcome in Louisville, Ky. this weekend.

Jackson was honored by the Louisville Cardinals in the form of getting his No. 8 jersey retired. He joined Johnny Unitas as the only two Louisville players to have their numbers retired by the university.

Still, the City of Louisville had more accolades in mind.

Louisville Mayor Greg Fischer proclaimed Nov. 13 as “Lamar Jackson Day” in the city. Jackson also received a street named after him on Louisville’s campus as well.

“It is my great honor to celebrate these unforgettable achievements by proclaiming November 13, 2021 as ‘Lamar Jackson Day’ here in the great city of Louisville, Kentucky,” Fischer said. “Congratulations, No. 8, you will always have a home in our city.”

HISTORIC MOMENT: Louisville surprises Lamar Jackson with heartwarming video announcing jersey retirement

Jackson played in 38 games at Louisville, turning in several memorable moments that included winning the 2016 Heisman Memorial Trophy. Jackson finished his career with 9,043 passing yards, 69 touchdowns and 27 interceptions. He also rushed for 4,132 yards and 50 touchdowns.

His impact changed the Louisville program. Future students will be able to recognize his contributions as they travel down the newly named “Lamar Jackson Way” leading to Cardinal Stadium.

Jackson was appreciative of the entire afternoon. He told the Louisville faithful that it was an amazing feeling to be honored by his alma mater.

“You guys have been with me every step of the way,” Jackson said. “I just can't thank you guys enough. I wouldn't want to go to any other school.”

Louisville defeated Syracuse, 41-3, to earn its fifth win of the season. Several fans celebrated Jackson during the game and the Louisville band honored him with a special formation

Jackson is putting together another special NFL campaign with the Baltimore Ravens. He’s led the Ravens to a 6-3 record this season.