PULLMAN, Wash. Former Cougar and NFL quarterback Drew Bledsoe received the Washington State University Alumni Association (WSUAA) Alumni Achievement Award during the Apple Cup football game Saturday at martin Stadium. Bledsoe was honored for his array of accomplishments in athletics, business, and philanthropy.
Born in Ellensburg, Wash., Bledsoe spent most of his childhood in the Walla Walla Valley. After graduating from Walla Walla High School, he enrolled in WSU on a football scholarship to study English.
He earned a spot in the starting lineup as a true freshman and quickly became an essential element of the Cougar offense. In 28 starts at WSU he amassed numerous records, including single-game passing yards (476), single-season pass completions (241), and single-season passing yards (3,246). Bledsoe was named Pacific-10 Conference Player of the Year as a junior. For legions of Cougar football fans, Drew’s football legacy will be forever connected with the famous “Snow Bowl” victory he led over the University of Washington in the 1992 Apple Cup.
After entering the NFL draft in 1993, he was chosen as the number one overall draft pick by the New England Patriots. He started his rookie season, and by his second year with the Patriots he led the league in pass attempts, passing yards, and completions. During his eight years on the Patriots’ roster he led the team to four postseason appearances and earned three Pro Bowl invitations.
In 2002, his trade to the Buffalo Bills preceded one of his best-ever seasons. His 4,359 passing yards and 24 touchdowns helped him earn a fourth trip to the Pro Bowl. In 2005 he signed with the Dallas Cowboys. He threw for over 3000 yards that season and led the team to a 9-7 record.
When Bledsoe retired in April 2007, he left fifth in NFL history in pass attempts (6,717) and completions (3,839), seventh in passing yards (44,611), and 13th in touchdown passes (251).
After his retirement, Bledsoe returned to the Northwest with his wife Maura and four children. In 2008, he announced the launch of Doubleback, an estate-focused winery in the Walla Walla Valley. Doubleback’s first wine, a 2007 Cabernet Sauvignon, was released this fall. He is also actively involved with many philanthropic organizations, including the Drew Bledsoe Foundation which helps to support parenting education.
The Alumni Achievement Award is the highest honor bestowed by the WSUAA. Bledsoe is the 493rd recipient of the prestigious Alumni Achievement Award. For more information, please contact Christina Parrish, Assistant Director of Alumni Engagement, at 509-335-6907 or email@example.com