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Gold and Black Illustrated, Vol 27, Digital 5

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GOLD AND BLACK ILLUSTRATED VOLUME 27, ISSUE 5 12 W hen Kawann Short came to campus as part of his annual tour with a group of high school students from his alma mater, East Chicago Central, the NFL pro didn't seem concerned about his contract status. Perhaps he knew then what was released publicly 11 days later on April 17 when Caro- lina announced it had signed Short to a five- year contract, reportedly worth $80.5 million with $40 million over the first two years guaranteed. Short had signed a franchise tag with the Panthers, but the long-term deal is more than justified. The former Boilermaker had 17 sacks the last two seasons, third-most in the NFL among defensive tackles. The fourth-year pro had 11 sacks alone in 2015, his breakout year. We caught up with Short on April 6, when he had about 25 ECC students at Purdue, joined by former Boilermakers Kevin Pam- phile, who plays for the Tampa Bay Bucca- neers, and Anthony Heygood. Q. What do you still want to achieve in your career? Short: "I haven't done anything yet. My main goal in playing football is to win a ring, and we got close (in 2016) and didn't win it. That's the main goal, to get back and finish the job. And obviously, you want to go down as one of the best defensive tackles to play the game." Q. You've had a lot of success, a Pro Bowl and other awards. Short: "That's just a starter. You see a lot of guys who have done all of that, Pro Bowls and contract, but they never got a ring. The ring is very significant, it means you achieved the top. That's why we play the game, to win. To do that, there are stepping stones to get- ting the ring. It's the most important." Q. Financial security allows you do events like this, bringing students on a Purdue tour, or holding your annual youth football camp. Short: "I can do it without a worry now (smiling). I've never had an issue about swiping my card (to pay) or whatever I had to do. I feel like we need it, these kids are our future. I wish someone had done this when I was young to help me see there's more to East Chicago then crossing railroad tracks. You come down an hour-and-a-half, you get a whole different environment, different cul- ture, different school and different personali- ties. Just to see that and get away from home for a while, it makes you wonder what else is out there in the world." Q. As a football player, you got to take college tours. Nice to be able to do it for these students, to give them a similar ex- perience? Short: "A lot these kids don't do sports. They want to do academics, go to school to be a doctor or whatever. We didn't set a limit for sports (athletes) only, we opened it up and sent emails to parents saying, 'We're taking a Boiler Index Boilers Making Millions Kawann Short's recent reported five-year, $80-million con- tract is second-highest among former Boilermakers in the NFL. Here's the list of the five largest contracts, based on annual salary at time of the contract/and the annual salary valued in today's dollars: (Contract year in parenthesis) 1. Drew Brees (2012), New Orleans, $20 million/$21.4 million 2. Kawann Short (2017), Carolina, $16 million 3. Ryan Kerrigan (2015), Washington, $11.2 million/$11.8 milllion 4. Anthony Spencer (2013), Dallas, $10.6 million/$11.6 million 5. Mike Alstott (1998), Tampa Bay, $6.4 million/$9.6 million 1 2 3 4 5 Photos by Kyle Charters (Short); NFL teams (former players); Stacy Clardie (facility); Gold and Black (Glenn Robinson); Purdue (Ross-Ade, baseball)

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