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As reported by Anthony Rocca.
SpartanThunder.com has learned that Mike Perez, the SJSU Football star QB of the 1980's who led the Spartans to the amazing comeback over Fresno State in 1987, will officially join the Spartan football team later next week all thanks to a strange technicality in the NCAA rule book.
Perez, now in his mid-late 40's, known for being one of the premier physical specimens in the history of SJSU football lore, has remained in great shape and has been privately working out for the last several months in the hope of making one of the greatest comebacks in sports history. SpartanThunder.com has obtained copies of documents submitted to the NCAA from Perez and his lawyers requesting, and being granted, an extra year of eligibility 21 years after his last throw with the Spartans all because he left early for the World football league and not the NFL.
Perez left SJSU after his senior season for the upstart World Football League, where he was the star of the Frankfurt Galaxy completing 171 of 357 for 2,272 yards and 13 TD's. Led the Spartans for a school record of 3,260 yards (243 of 408) and 22 TD's.
The World football league filed a $1.69 billion anti-trust lawsuit against the NFL and won in principle, but not financially, and was awarded a mere $3.76 in the landmark case. The league folded in 1986 after losing over $160 million dollars, and Perez was off to a career in Real Estate, and became known as the "Blue and Gold Agent".
Because the World league went out of business when it did, and because the NCAA didn't have any specific rules at the time for players to lose their eligibility by leaving early for the new league (but they were in place for the NFL), technically, Perez, under the current NCAA rulebook still has one more year of eligibility remaining. Because Perez has remained in peak physical condition, the wild possibility brought to his attention by a San Jose State fan working for the NCAA two years ago, is now about to become a reality.
"It's like when a college football player goes off to play major league baseball during the summer," said Gary Olimpia, Perez's attorney. "A player can get paid millions as a baseball prospect yet still remain eligible to play college football.
In essence, that's what Perez going to the World League was like. His later service in the World League isn't pertinent to the NCAA rulebook as it applies to him. Technically, it's as if he left to go stock shelves for Wal-Mart."
Perez has continued to do his trademark 2,500 sit-ups and 1,500 push-ups every day, and while he no longer can run 100 yards in 9.3 seconds, inside observers to his workouts say he has still has more than enough burst to be a productive backup college QB.
"You're talking about one of the greatest athletes this University has ever produced," said one inside Spartan Booster source who wished to remain anonymous. "This is a guy who was SJSU legend, a world-class man on campus, and one of the greatest all-around QB's in the history of SJSU football. Of course he's not the same athlete he was at 22, but he's better than 90% of the kids playing college football right now in the WAC!"
SJSU head coach, Dick Tomey, declined to offer up much insight, but he did say that there were "discussions" about Perez possibly rejoining a team that will be ranked in almost everyone's preseason top three in the WAC.
"Mike Perez is one of the greatest players in the history of our game and a Spartan legend," said Tomey. "We want him around our program in any way he wants to be involved."
SJSU already has a deep QB line up with a Cal transfer on the way, and leading the way along with promising young talents in Jordan La Secla, and Myles Eden. More help is coming in from the recruiting class. Perez, who said he didn't want to comment until later next week, told a spokesman that he doesn't plan on being a number one quarterback, and he doesn't want to be a distraction, but he still thinks he can contribute and he believes he can help SJSU win its first conference title since 1990.
"This really isn't about Perez looking for lost glory or the limelight," said Tomey. "This is about doing something that no one has ever been able to do and taking advantage of one of the unique opportunities the sports world has ever seen."
There are a few snags to overcome before Perez can rejoin his old team this summer. He is rumored to be the mystery third candidate in the race for the Democratic presidential nomination, will reunite with New Kids on the Block on the Today Show, and he has to finish planning a baby shower for Jamie Lynn Spears.
First, Perez will kick off his hectic month wishing everyone the most happiest of April Fool's Days.