Philip Rivers, a record-setting passer at NC State and current starting quarterback for the NFL’s San Diego Chargers, is scheduled to speak at commencement on Saturday, May 12.
The 2003 Atlantic Coast Conference Player of the Year, Rivers started all 51 games at quarterback for the Wolfpack over his four-year career. He rewrote the record books for both NC State and the ACC in every passing and total offense category. Rivers ended up the second leading passer in NCAA history with 13,484 career passing yards and finished tied for fifth in NCAA history with 95 career touchdown passes.
He capped off his career with a stellar senior season in which he led the nation with a 72.0 completion percentage and 170.49 pass efficiency rating. Rivers became the first quarterback in ACC history, and only the seventh in NCAA history, to throw for 3,000 yards in three different seasons. His jersey, number 17, was retired before his final home game on Nov. 22, 2003. He graduated with a degree in business management in December 2003.
A first-round draft choice, Rivers was selected by the New York Giants with the fourth pick of the 2004 NFL Draft and was traded to the San Diego Chargers minutes later. He has been selected to the NFL Pro Bowl four times. He is the Chargers’ all-time leader for career completion percentage (63.5 percent) and passer rating (95.5). He is coming off a milestone 2011 season with 27 touchdown passes and 4,624 passing yards, and is closing in on 25,000 career passing yards and 200 career touchdown passes.
Off the field, Rivers was named one of three finalists for the prestigious Walter Payton NFL Man of the Year Award for his work with the Rivers of Hope Foundation. Rivers and his wife, Tiffany, launched the foundation in 2010 to help unwanted, abandoned and orphaned children find permanent loving homes. The Rivers of Hope Foundation has raised more than $650,000 through football camps and a 5K fun run, and Rivers personally contributes 100 percent of his off-the-field revenue to the foundation. Additionally, Rivers and teammate Quentin Jammer partnered to help fund the creation of a football stadium for San Pasqual Academy, a first-in-the-nation residential education campus designed specifically for foster teens.
Philip and Tiffany have six children—four girls and two boys.