Last night, I had the honor and privilege to meet San Francisco 49ers RB Jarryd Hayne’s family at Levi’s Stadium. A player who has quickly made headlines across the world while being a fan favorite among the Forever Faithful, Hayne’s mother (Jodie) gave some insight on her son’s rise to the NFL.
I asked Jodie to think back to the time when she first realized her son would grow up to be a star athlete. “When he was in preschool, kicking the ball over the fence,” Jodie said.
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Bloodlines which run deep, Jodie went on to say that genetics probably played a key role in Jarryd’s success. “He was always very sport. His father’s very sporty. His father was a professional league player. My cousin’s a professional league player, so it runs in the family. So he’s lucky.”
— Ryan Sakamoto (@SakamotoRyan) September 4, 2015
Hayne who has turned plenty of heads here in the Bay Area and across the nation seems to be adjusting to life in the United States quite well. “He seems to be enjoying it, which is really good. He seems to love it,” Jodie said.
Shaking hands with #49ers RB Jarryd Hayne’s family as I go back to the press box but not before I share a laugh with my boy Kevin Lynch! #NinerFans #ForeverFaithful #HaynePlane #HayneTrain A video posted by Ryan Sakamoto ? (@sakamotoryan_) on
Jarryd’s two younger sisters, Taygan, 19, and Jessi-Lee, 18, try and keep in touch with him as often as they can via facebook messaging. “We try to inbox him as much as we can through facebook at least three to four times a week, but always, always, before a game.”
But what’s the story behind the No. 38? The majority of people who play sports have some sort of meaning behind the number and Hayne is no different. “It’s an omen,” Jodie told me. “Back when he played in the NRL, he had three numbers to choose from and 38 was one of them. He chose 38 and made the team.” And Hayne hasn’t worn another number since.
With the 49ers continuing to trim the roster to 53, I fully expect Hayne to make the squad, as he is just too good of an athlete not to retain.
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