Emmitt Smith Biography

Athlete, Football Player, Television Personality(1969–)
Emmitt Smith was a running back with the Dallas Cowboys. In 2002, he broke Walter Payton's rushing record to become the leading rusher in NFL history.

Synopsis

Born on May 15, 1969, in Pensacola, Florida, Emmitt Smith played football for the University of Florida before leaving in his junior year to play for his dream team, the Dallas Cowboys. With the Cowboys, Smith became the NFL's all-time leading rusher and won the Superbowl XXVIII MVP award in 1994. He returned the spotlight in 2006 as a contestant on the hit television show, Dancing with the Stars, and was invited back on the show in 2012, for Dancing with the Stars: All-Stars (season 15).

Early Life

Professional football player and television personality Emmitt Smith was born on May 15, 1969, in Pensacola, Florida. As a young boy, Smith dreamed of playing for the Dallas Cowboys, but he had to face many obstacles before he could make that dream a reality. Growing up, his family struggled financially. He worked several different jobs in order to earn extra money and helped out with his ailing grandmother.

A stellar athlete in high school, Smith went on to play football at the University of Florida. As a part of the Florida Gators' team, he quickly established himself as one of its most dynamic players: He rushed more than 100 yards in his first game alone, and set and broke his own rushing record while at the university, tying the school record of 14 for rushing touchdowns. Many of his records at the school remain unbroken today.

Dallas Cowboys and Arizona Cardinals

In 1990, Smith left University of Florida during his junior year to play for his dream team, the NFL's Dallas Cowboys. Over his 12 seasons with the Cowboys, he excelled as a running back and became a crucial part of the team's offense. Smith helped the team take three Super Bowl Championship victories in 1993, 1994 and 1996. He was singled out for his performance on the field at Super Bowl XXVIII, and won the MVP honor in 1994. He also played in several Pro Bowl games.

Smith became the first player to rush for more than 1,000 yards in 11 seasons straight. In 2002, he broke Walter Payton's rushing record to become the leading rusher in NFL history. Despite his successes, Smith ended up playing the last two seasons of his career (2003 and 2004) with the Arizona Cardinals. Over 14 seasons, he rushed more than 18,000 yards and scored 164 rushing touchdowns.

Life Off the Field

In 2006, Smith returned the spotlight as a contestant on the hit television show, Dancing with the Stars. He won the competition, beating out actor Mario Lopez in the final round. Smith showed the world that he knew how to move on and off the field. Smith was invited back on the show in 2012, to compete on Dancing with the Stars: All-Stars (season 15).

Smith lives in Dallas, Texas, with his wife, Pat, and their four children.

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