Oldest college football player in America is ready for final year

Tom Gore won’t be a grandfather for another couple of months, but his teammates still call him “pop-pop.”

A defensive nose tackle for the Methodist University Monarchs, Gore competes with and against boys half his age. He’s also older than every one of his coaches at the Division III school in Fayetteville. 

At 45, Gore is believed to be the oldest active college football player in the country, though the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) – which oversees 893 collegiate football programs nationwide – doesn’t track age.

“At best, there might be a handful of others (that age), and I’d say even that’s a stretch,” Jeff Williams, an associate director in the NCAA’s statistics department, said. “I mean, I’m 46. I can’t imagine waking up and trying to play college football right now.”