For all the pageantry that comes with it and the cultural importance that is tied to it, the Super Bowl is, above all else, an event to crown one of the NFL’s 32 teams as a champion.
But while the San Francisco 49ers and Kansas City Chiefs players competing for the Lombardi Trophy Sunday at Allegiant Stadium in Las Vegas are no longer in college — some of whom are long removed from their NCAA playing days — the NFL’s grandest spectacle isn’t without ties to college football.
For the vast majority of 49ers and Chiefs players, college football was an important step in their journeys to the NFL, the place where they were molded from raw high schoolers into more refined products ready to take on the challenges of professional football. By reaching the Super Bowl, they’ve demonstrated they can be contributors for a winning team that’s one victory away from capturing its biggest dream.
For the college programs they left behind, the appearance of former players in the Super Bowl is an opportunity to tout themselves and whatever role they had in helping that player reach that kind of a stage. It makes for a pretty solid recruiting pitch, too.
While having former players taking part in the Super Bowl won’t hand a college a national championship or a College Football Playoff berth, it’s an interesting measuring stick for how well particular programs do, not only in sending players to the league, but also having them be part of successful squads once there.
What does that mean for this year? Which college will have the most players competing in the 2024 Super Bowl? Let’s take a look:
Which college has the most players in the 2024 Super Bowl?
The most well-represented school on the field in Las Vegas Sunday will be one of college football’s historic powers: Oklahoma.
Between the San Francisco and Kansas City rosters, the Sooners have six former players:
- C Creed Humphrey (Chiefs)
- OT Wanya Morris (Chiefs)
- TE Blake Bell (Chiefs)
- LS James Winchester (Chiefs)
- OT Trent Williams (49ers)
- TE Brayden Willis (49ers)
It’s the second-consecutive year that Oklahoma has the most players of any college in the Super Bowl. In last season’s matchup between the Chiefs and Philadelphia Eagles, the Sooners also had six players between the two rosters, including Eagles star quarterback Jalen Hurts and offensive tackle Lane Johnson.
Colleges with the most players in the 2024 Super Bowl
With Oklahoma leading the way, here are the colleges with at least two former players competing in Sunday’s Super Bowl:
- 6: Oklahoma
- 5: Georgia, Florida, Clemson
- 4: Michigan, USC, TCU, Middle Tennessee
- 3: Washington, Penn State, LSU, Oregon, Missouri, Stanford, Rutgers, Western Michigan
- 2: Alabama, Notre Dame, Ohio State, Tennessee, Purdue, Kentucky, NC State, Kansas State, Miami, Cincinnati, Arkansas, UCLA, Mississippi State, South Carolina, Georgia Tech, South Florida, Ball State, SMU, San Diego State, BYU, Harvard