Football Team

WFT CB St-Juste recalls gifting Pope Francis pair of Jordans

Football Team

Benjamin St-Juste's journey from the No. 2 high school recruit out of Canada to the Washington Football Team's third-round pick in the 2021 NFL Draft has a lot of twists and turns.

That road includes a stop in Michigan, where St-Juste played under Jim Harbaugh until transferring to Minnesota in 2019. In an interview with former Washington cornerback Fred Smoot, the newest member of Washington's secondary shared an unforgettable story about the time the Wolverines blessed Pope Francis with some Michigan swag.

"Freshman year at Michigan, Coach Harbaugh brought up a new thing that he wanted to do. He wanted to travel every year after spring practices, and the first destination was Rome," St-Juste recalled.

"Obviously the Vatican is in Rome, so that had to be on the list of activities. So we went there early in the morning, and with the connections that we had, we were able to meet the Pope and be there."

But they didn't come empty-handed to their meet and great with His Holiness. They came with gifts, and left with one of the most iconic photos in sports history. 

"Coach Harbaugh decided to bring a pair of Jordan V's and he gave it to the Pope, took a picture with the Pope raising them in the air," St-Juste said. "It's random, but it's a historical moment. It's a classic."

Smoot followed up with the question we all want to know the answer to: "Did he actually wear the Jordans?"


"I don't know if he got fresh like that," St-Jute said laughing.