To the Stanford Family:
As my Stanford Football career has come to an abrupt and unexpected close, millions of thoughts are flying through my head. While this is not the way I had imagined my college playing days ending, all I can do is look up and thank God for one heck of a ride. During my five years at Stanford, I was fortunate enough to start 34 games, compete in three BCS Bowl Games, win a Pac-12 Championship and earn an amazing degree from one of the world's finest institutions. Along the way, I was able to play with countless NFL stars, learn from dozens of great coaches, and work with a group of men who I consider to be my family on a daily basis. For these reasons, I consider myself one of the luckiest 22-year-old men on the planet. Although this injury will undoubtedly make my transition to professional football more challenging, I have never been one to back down from a challenge, and I like my chances.
People have doubted me for my entire career and they will continue to do so, but I trust that my experiences at Stanford have put me in a position where I cannot fail. In the meantime, I will fulfill my duties as a team captain, and I'll be right there alongside my boys when we finish our journey towards the Pac-12 Championship. What we do here at Stanford is special, and I can’t wait to soak it all in over the next two months with my brothers. The #partyinthebackfield never stops, so let’s beat Oregon and keep this thing rolling. Thank you all for five amazing years.
#49 Ben Gardner