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Average age of college football players

Average age of college football players

What’s the average age of college football players? You may be wondering this, as playing football in your mid 20s would give you an advantage.

We’ve run through some of the rules to keep in mind if you’re considering it. We’ve also talked about some of the oldest college football players in history.

How old is The Average College Football Player?

Most people graduate from high school when they are 17-18. They are likely going to college straight afterwards. Most universities have programs that go on for 4 years. As a result, the average college football player would be around 17-22 years of age.

Not everyone goes to college right away. It’s very common for students to take gap years. That time could be spent traveling or taking time to find themselves.

The 5-Year Rule

You might have heard of division 1, 2 and 3 teams before. Division 1 teams are usually for the most elite athletes. As a result, they have much stricter rules.

The three divisions are hosted by the NCAA. The NCAA would give you a time limit to take part in sports once your enrolment has started. The board sets the limit for 4 seasons.

For D2 and D3 teams, you can use the 4 seasons of eligibility within the first 10 semesters. This is not the case for D1 counterparts.

For all sports that are not tennis, hockey or skiing, any competitions you’ve taken part in would affect the 4 year period. Let’s say you’ve taken a gap year for 2 years. During this period, you would have played organized competitions. Once you go to college, the time you spent playing outside of school would be cut from your 4 year eligibility. This would mean that you’ll only be able to play college football for 2 years.


There are exceptions to the 5-year rule. If you’ve taken part in the following, you don’t have to worry:

  • The military
  • A religious mission

You may have enrolled in college and taken part in a sports team. However, you may have got drafted to the army. The time you spent before would not be checked when you come back.

Can I Play College Football at 25 Years Old?

You are never too old or too young to play college football. You can definitely play college football at the age of 25. In fact 25 is one of the best times to do so. There is absolutely no reason why your age should be a disadvantage.

Who is the Oldest College Football Player Right Now?

Although the NCAA lets individuals who are older play the sport, what are the chances that someone who’s 50 would play it? There’s actually been quite a few older individuals who’s done it.

Right now, the oldest active player is believed to be 45 year old Tim Gore. He plays for Methodist University Monarchs. Gore is a father as well as grandfather.

Below are some of the oldest individuals to have played before him.

Alan Moore

The oldest person to have played college football is Alan Moore. He played till he was 61 years. He was a kicker for Faulkner University in Montgomery, Alabama.

Moore previously played college football in 1968. However, he was drafted into the army. After his time in the military, he worked in construction.

He played for Faulkner University in 2011.

Tom Thompson

Like Moore, Thompson was 61 years of age. He was a member of Austin College, Texas. His position was kicker.

Thompson only played for one season, in 2009. That being said, he ended up scoring an extra point for his team. He admitted to playing football when he was in high school which was 50 years prior.

Mike Flynt

Flynt was 59 when he played. He a member Sul Ross State University, Texas’s team. This was in 2007. Flynt’s position was linebacker. At the time, he was the oldest person to have played college football.

He worked as a strength and conditioning coach before playing for Sul Ross. You could say he had an advantage.

Joe Thomas Sr

Joe Thomas Sr is the father of Joe Thomas Jr, a member of the Dallas Cowboys. Thomas Sr played at the age of 55 for South Carolina State University. His position was running back.

Who is the Oldest College Quarterback?

The oldest college quarterback is not known.  But we have to talk about Chris Weinke. He is notable as he’s played for the NFL. He spent most of his career with the Carolina Panthers.

Weinke is the oldest college quarterback to have won Florida State University’s prestigious Heisman award. He was 26 years old.

Can a 40 Year Old Play College Football?

Technically, a 40 year old can play college football. The chances of him having taken part in an organized competition during this his life would be high, though.

Although the player might be able to join his university’s team, this doesn’t mean he should. Football is a very tactile sport. A lot of training would be needed too. A 40 year old man would not always be able to handle this.

The average age for the members in the team would be 18-22. Being in a team with people who are much younger wouldn’t be ideal either. This isn’t what you want in a sports team, as communication is key.

The player would likely have a family. The constant training would not only take a toll on his  body, but he’ll also spend less time with his family. Certain D1 teams require training even during the summer. How will he manage all of this with his studies and being with his loved ones?

There are no age restrictions on who can play college football. That being said, many people say that letting someone in their mid-20s play against 18–20-year-olds would be unfair. After all, he would be in his prime and have an advantage over other players.

Although you can play the sport at any age, the NCAA does have some rules. If you’ve played an organized competition before you’ve enrolled, the time you spend in the football team would be cut short. The exception to this would be if you’ve been in the military or have been on a religious mission.