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John Madden’s Grandson is Continuing His Legacy at Michigan
Photo by Focus on Sport/Getty Images (left), AP Photo/Paul Sancya (right)

Young or old, football fans around the country know how influential John Madden was to the game. From his long and storied tenure as a head coach and broadcaster to his impact on the video game industry with the Madden NFL series, he is the definition of a legend. There’s a reason he was worth $200 million when he unexpectedly passed away.

Madden’s grandson, Jesse Madden, is trying to make an impact of his own in the game. He was the starting quarterback of his high school football team and now plays for the University of Michigan, which is playing in the College Football Playoff Semifinal Orange Bowl against Georgia this season.

Jesse Madden Michigan

RELATED: John Madden’s Net Worth: The King of Football is Certainly Paid Like It

Jesse Madden attended Bishop O’Dowd High School in Oakland, California. He is a solid player and his path to college football will likely come as a preferred walk-on.

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Jim Harbaugh and the University of Michigan offered Madden this kind of deal in July 2020. He accepted and wasn’t guaranteed a scholarship, but he could still make an impact on the the Wolverines one day.

Plenty of great college football players have made it big-time as walk-ons. Baker Mayfield became a Heisman Trophy winner. Clay Matthews was a star at USC. JJ Watt turned out to be one of the best defensive players in NFL history.

Jesse Madden is just a freshman in 2021, but there’s no telling what his future holds.  Especially with Madden in his genes. Hey, it wouldn’t be the first time an unheralded quarterback made a name for himself at Michigan, right Tom Brady?

Jesse Madden Highlights 

Madden started to take over the reins as the Dragons’ starting varsity quarterback late in his career. His dad was the offensive line coach. His legendary grandfather watched the games from his SUV using binoculars.

The state of California had postponed fall sports due to the COVID-19 pandemic, but they are back up and running now. Through his first three games in the 2020-21 season, Madden threw for 720 passing yards and seven touchdowns.

“There aren’t many Madden quarterbacks, and Jesse always had a ball in his hand, whether it was a basketball, a baseball or a football,” John Madden told the Bay Area News Group. “In Little League, he was a pitcher, and in Pop Warner a quarterback. He always threw. It’s who he was and who he is.”

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Madden and Bishop O’Dowd reached the state championship in 2019, too.

Jesse Madden is a more-than-serviceable quarterback who might one day get the chance to start in college. The Madden family name will continue to permeate the game of football for years to come.

This article was originally published on April 7, 2021, but it was updated after John Madden’s death.

MORE: Ree Drummond’s Foster Son Ready to Tackle College Football 

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Author placeholder image About the author:
Matt is a recent graduate of New York University with a degree in Sports Management. He is a passionate New York Yankees, New York Islanders, and Minnesota Vikings fan. He also has a podcast about minor league baseball called "On the Farm."
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