The Short, but Powerful Legacy of Ty Jordan

It is not often that you see a 19 year-old freshman running for 600 yards and 6 touchdowns in 5 games. However, this time, that man was Ty Jordan. In his final three games in his freshman year, Ty ran for 468 yards and 6 touchdowns. After each of his six touchdowns, he didn’t celebrate like many athletes we see today. He gave a couple high fives then headed right for the sideline. He didn’t yell, scream, dance, he just gave the ball to the referee and went on his way. Due to his extraordinary performance, he won the Pac-12 award for offensive freshman of the year. If only there was more time to witness his greatness.

On Christmas night, we were notified of a tragedy. Director of Sports Operations Jeff Rudy said, “When I heard, I couldn’t believe it; I didn’t want to believe it at first. There was no way.” Ty Jordan had passed from an accidental gunshot wound in his home in Texas; he was back there to celebrate Christmas with his family. Jordan was transported to a nearby hospital where he was pronounced dead on arrival. 

“It was super sad when he passed because he was so young. It was also super sad to see him go, because you knew he had a ton of potential and had a huge impact on the people around him,” said superfan Tanner Hummel. “It was super sad how young he was.”

Ty Jordan was only a young 19 year-old kid with potential to take it to the next level: the NFL. He could have been spectacular, not only in talent, but mentality, which could have made him extremely successful in the NFL.

“He just came off as a caring, humble, and uplifting guy who always wanted to uplift his teammates and make sure they were the best they could be. He didn’t only want himself to reach his potential, but his teammates as well,” said Rudy.

If you look up any of Ty’s highlights, you will see what makes him different. Sure he makes these huge plays, but look what happens after the play. A couple high fives and he is back in the huddle or sideline. These kinds of players do not come around often, especially as young as he is, it makes it even less common. With the level of talent he had through the few games he played, he was going places.

 “The last time anyone saw something like that in Utah football was Zach Moss.” said Hummel.

Moss had 4,000 yards and 41 touchdowns his entire career at Utah. He broke the record for most rushing yards in a career during his final couple games as a Ute. Jordan was on pace to have 2,000 yards in a season alone, so he would have shattered Moss’s record. He could have even broken the all-time record for yards in a career in the NCAA. Just how much potential would Ty have? If only there could be an answer to that question.

Of course Ty had the talent and work ethic to be one of the best at Utah, but his smile and personality were able to light up a room. Ty always would be working out, doing schoolwork, practicing, just always being productive, and that is what made him so good. Not only on the field was he an amazing guy, but off of it too.

“He always was smiling around campus, practice, anywhere. He was always talking and had a smile on his face, making the most of everything.” Rudy said. “There was just something different about him.”

There are so many things to miss about Ty, his personality, his talent, his mentality, his perspective on life. It’s tough to see such a remarkable young man go at such a young age. He will always have a place in every Ute fan’s heart.


Long Live Ty Jordan