Hate me not: Panthers' Smart now 'He Love Me'
CHARLOTTE, N.C. -- Carolina running back Rod Smart is changing the nickname that made him famous, dropping "He Hate Me" because he's become such a popular Panthers player.
Smart said Friday he will now go by "He Love Me."
"I came to Carolina and got my love," he said.
Smart originally used the nickname during his brief stint in the defunct XFL. He had "He Hate Me" stitched on the back of his Las Vegas Outlaws jersey as a statement to those who had dismissed him as a player.
But he's been embraced since Carolina claimed him off waivers in 2002, using a 100-yard kick return for a touchdown during the 2003 season to cement his popularity.
He hopes his coaches love him enough to keep him.
Smart, who missed most of last season with a knee injury, is on the bubble to make Carolina's roster and could be released Saturday in the final round of cuts.
Copyright 2005 by The Associated Press
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