What is Barry Sanders doing now? Exploring life of legendary Lions RB

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Barry Sanders has been largely quiet since his retirement

Ever since he shockingly retired from football in 1998 while still in his prime, Barry Sanders has been enjoying a largely quiet life. But just over a week ago, KSNT-27, a news channel in Topeka, Kansas, received confirmation that the legendary running back would be attending the Kansas Shrine Bowl, a high school football game, to be held in Hays.

Sanders will be the marshal for the parade preceding the game at 10 am. Then, before kickoff, he will be into the game's Hall of Fame. But what does he have to do with the state of Kansas?

As it turns out, Barry Sanders was born in Wichita, the largest city in Kansas, on July 16, 1984. As a child, he and two of his brothers would assist their father in carpentry and roofing, and he developed his love of sports by listening to college games.

In high school, he played football, basketball, baseball, and table tennis at Wichita North. He broke out as a senior, rushing for 1,417 yards and 17 touchdowns in seven games and earning all-state and all-American honors.

But despite such astounding numbers and accolades, many schools were hesitant to offer Sanders scholarships, citing his lack of height (only 5'8"). He eventually committed to Oklahoma State - one of only four offers shown to him.

As a Cowboy, Sanders initially backed up fellow future Hall of Famer Thurman Thomas and played on special teams. After Thomas left for the NFL in 1988, Sanders, now a junior, became the starter and proceeded to set multiple college records, including most rushing yards (2,628).

Sanders' college exploits greatly boosted his draft stock, as he went 3rd overall in 1989 with the Detroit Lions, where he would have his equally legendary career. During his professional career, he had a son, Barry James, who later played running back at Stanford and Oklahoma State before joining the marketing division of video game company Electronic Arts.

After retirement, he married Lauren Campbell and had three more sons: Nicholas, Nigel and Noah. Nicholas is currently a point guard at Michigan State, Noah is a quarterback at Delaware, and Nigel is a musician.

Barry Sanders' net worth in 2023

As of this writing, Barry Sanders in worth $35 million. Most of his fortune came from his on-field performance.

His rookie contract was worth $9.5 million for five years, with a signing bonus of $2.1 million - he donated 10% of said bonus to the Paradise Baptist Church in his native Wichita. In 1993, the last year of said contract, Sanders agreed to remain with the Lions for four years and $17.2 million - highest among non-quarterbacks.

Sanders' retirement had a profound effect on his finances - just two years before, he had signed a new six-year, $34.56-million contract with the team, with an $11-million signing bonus. Upon his retirement, the Lions successfully sued him for $7.37 million of it, with $1.83 million to be returned immediately. As a result, he also had to request the reduction of his child support.

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Edited by Andre Castillo