How Did The Iconic 1990 Score Bo Jackson Card Come To Be?

June 13, 2023

In the pantheon of sports legends, a select few transcend their respective sports, leaving an unforgettable mark on athletics. Bo Jackson, a name that resonates with power, speed, and sheer athletic dominance, stands tall among these revered figures.

With a unique blend of strength, agility, and versatility, Bo Jackson defied the limits of what was possible in football and baseball. His mesmerizing displays of athleticism captivated audiences around the globe, earning him a legendary status that continues to shine brightly today.

After an extraordinary 1989 season, Score celebrated Bo’s unique talent in their 1990 Score set. This was a testament to Jackson’s unprecedented athletic achievements and profound impact on both sports.

This article shall delve into the fascinating world of the 1990 Score Bo Jackson card, exploring its significance, design, rarity, and why it remains a favorite amongst collectors. We unravel the story behind this iconic card, inviting you to step back in time and relive the excitement surrounding the indomitable Bo Jackson.

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Bo Jackson’s popularity during the 1980s

Vincent Edward Jackson, famously known as Bo Jackson, was born on November 30, 1962. He starred for the Kansas City Royals of Major League Baseball and the Los Angeles Raiders of the National Football League (NFL).

While Bo had a short and storied professional career, he is widely considered one of the greatest all-around athletes in history. When we look at his numbers, it’s easy to see why.


While playing for the Auburn Tigers football team, he ran for 4,303 career yards, the fourth-best performance in SEC history. Bo finished his career with an average of 6.6 yards (6.0 m) per carry, which set the SEC record (minimum 400 rushes). In 1982, Jackson’s first year, Auburn played Boston College in the Tangerine Bowl, where Jackson made a one-handed grab on an option pitch.

Auburn went on to win the game 33–26 as Jackson rushed 14 times for 64 yards and 2 TDs. In 1985, Bo rushed for 1,786 yards, the second-best single-season performance in SEC history. That year, he averaged 6.4 yards per rush, the best single-season average in SEC history. He was awarded the Heisman Trophy for his performance in 1985.

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Major Leagues

Bo Jackson burst onto the professional sports scene in 1986. He was initially drafted in 1986 by the Buccaneers.

However, Bo refused to play for them. He instead opted to play baseball for the Kansas City Royals, passing up what would have been his rookie season in the NFL. Jackson signed a three-year contract with the Kansas City Royals shortly after the draft. Usually, baseball draft picks spend at least a couple of seasons in the minors.

However, Bo was fast-tracked. He played just 53 games with the Memphis Chicks, the Royals’ Class AA minor league affiliate, and was called up to the majors in September 1986, the same year he was drafted.

During the 1987 NFL Draft, the Raiders gave Jackson a shot and picked him in the seventh round since his rights with the Bucs had expired. While he only played in seven games during his NFL rookie year, due to his Baseball commitment, he showed great prospect.

In just seven games, Bo averaged nearly 80 yards per game and ended the season rushing for over 550 yards with four touchdowns and an astounding 6.8 yards per carry.

The dual-sport superstar Bo immediately captivated fans and experts alike with his exceptional talent on the gridiron and the baseball diamond.

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Bo Jackson’s 1989 Season

While Bo Jackson had showcased his remarkable talent and athleticism in prior seasons, it was in the 1989 season that he truly ascended to a new level of dominance.

Jackson’s performances in 1989 were nothing short of awe-inspiring in football and baseball. He elevated his game to extraordinary heights, captivating fans and leaving opponents in disbelief.

Bo Jackson’s 1989 season stood as the pinnacle of his remarkable career and established himself as one of the most dominant athletes of his era. In baseball, Jackson’s power and versatility were on full display. He notched 32 homers and 105 RBI and was voted to start in the All-Star Game.

Bo hit a homer and stole a base, and in the end, he was named MVP of the game. In addition to being named to the 1989 MLB All-Star Game, Jackson was also named the MVP of the game.

1989 also proved to be Jackson’s best season in the NFL. Playing in 11 games, Bo rushed for 950 yards, with four touchdowns and averaged 5.5 yards per carry. Jackson also had his career-long run of 92 yards.

Jackson’s impact on the gridiron was undeniable, as he established himself as one of the NFL’s most electrifying players. Jackson’s remarkable season earned him a spot in the All-Star Game.


With that, Bo became the first player selected to an All-Star game in two different sports.

His 1989 season was a testament to his exceptional talent and unrivaled versatility. He showcased his prowess in two demanding professional sports, leaving an indelible mark on both.

His performances during this season solidified his status as a transcendent athlete. It captured fans’ imagination and etched Bo’s name into sports history as one of the most dominant forces to ever grace the field of play.

The Bo Jackson Nike commercial

Bo Jackson’s incredible performances during the 1989 season solidified his status as a sporting legend and caught the attention of major brands seeking to capture his electrifying talent and captivating persona.

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Nike, known for its groundbreaking advertising campaigns, seized the opportunity to showcase Bo Jackson’s remarkable abilities in a now-iconic advert that would forever etch his name in popular culture.

The Nike “Bo Knows” advert, released in 1989, became an instant cultural phenomenon that transcended the realm of sports advertising. Featuring the incomparable Bo Jackson, the ad showcased his unparalleled versatility and mesmerizing athleticism.

Set against a backdrop of various sports and activities, Jackson effortlessly transitioned from one discipline to another, leaving viewers in awe of his mastery.

The campaign’s tagline, “Bo Knows,” became synonymous with excellence and versatility, embodying the idea that Bo Jackson could excel in any endeavour he pursued.

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The impact of the “Bo Knows” campaign extended far beyond its initial release. The iconic ad solidified Bo Jackson’s status as a cultural icon and became a defining moment in sports marketing. It paved the way for future advertising campaigns that sought to celebrate athletes’ versatility and star power.

The “Bo Knows” legacy endures as a reminder of Bo Jackson’s extraordinary talent, the power of branding, and the lasting influence of an iconic advertising campaign that captured the essence of an exceptional athlete. To this day, the “Bo Knows” campaign is a testament to the legacy of Bo Jackson’s incredible 1989 season.

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The 1990 Score Bo Knows card

Score leveraged the iconic Nike “Bo Knows” advert and used the image for their Bo Jackson card in their Score baseball set. The 1990 Score Bo Jackson card is a testament to Score’s innovative approach.

By incorporating elements from the ad into the card design, Score celebrated Bo Jackson’s talents and tapped into the Nike campaign’s cultural impact.

The front of the 1990 Score card showcased an attention-grabbing image of Bo Jackson, reminiscent of the powerful visuals from the Nike advert. Bo is depicted in a dynamic pose, exuding strength and determination.

The card is a simple black-and-white picture of Bo with football pads on with his bat behind his head. The back is simple yet elegant. It simply reads, “BO”. The “B” is in Kansan City Royal Blue, and the “O” is in black for the LA Raiders.

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The card design incorporated vibrant colors, bold typography, and eye-catching graphics, all reminiscent of the energy and excitement surrounding the “Bo Knows” campaign.

By mirroring the aesthetic of the advert, Score captured the essence of Bo Jackson’s versatility. The card became more than just a collectible—it became a tangible connection to the cultural zeitgeist surrounding Bo Jackson and his awe-inspiring talent.

Initial reaction to the 1990 Score Bo Jackson card

The initial reaction to the 1990 Score Bo Jackson “Bo Knows” card was overwhelmingly positive and generated significant excitement among collectors and sports fans. The card perfectly captured the essence of Bo Jackson’s larger-than-life persona and celebrated his exceptional athleticism and versatility.

Collectors were particularly drawn to the card’s unique design, incorporating elements from the iconic Nike “Bo Knows” advert. The bold and vibrant visuals, coupled with the energetic typography, mirrored the spirit of the original campaign and immediately caught the eye. Fusing the Nike branding with Score’s trading card format created a sense of novelty and added to the card’s appeal.

The “Bo Knows” card quickly became a highly sought-after collectible. Its popularity was not solely limited to Bo Jackson enthusiasts but also attracted a wider audience due to the cultural significance of the Nike campaign.

The card symbolized Bo Jackson’s iconic status and served as a testament to his impact on the sports world and popular culture.

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1990 Score Bo Jackson 697 Rarity

While the 1990 Score Bo Jackson “Bo Knows” card wasn’t exactly in all 1990 Score packs, it’s still a junk wax-era card. Hence it is considered relatively common compared to other highly sought-after sports cards.

Score massively produced its 1990 Score Baseball set. As a result, the Bo Jackson card from this set is very common and can be found easily.

Bo Jackson 1990 Score value

The average value of the 1990 Score Bo Jackson 1990 Score 697 is $21.90. Sold comparables range in price from a few bucks to a high of $250 for a PSA 10.

Despite being relatively common, the 1990 Score Bo Jackson “Bo Knows” card holds a special place in sports collecting. This is due to its connection to the enduring legacy of Bo Jackson and Nike’s memorable advertising campaign.

As of the time of writing this, the 1990 Score Bo Jackson card has been graded 14,394 times. This is a testament to its enduring popularity and the immense collector demand.

Ultimately, for some collectors the value of the 1990 Score Bo Jackson “Bo Knows” card extends beyond its monetary worth. It holds sentimental value for collectors who appreciate Bo Jackson’s exceptional career and the cultural significance of the Nike campaign.

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Comparing the value of the 1990 Score Bo Knows card with other 1990 Bo Jackson cards

During the early 1990s, numerous trading card companies vied to capture the essence of Bo Jackson’s unparalleled dual-sport athleticism. They released various cards featuring the multi-sport sensation. Among these offerings, the 1990 Score Bo Jackson card stands out as a highly sought-after collectible. However, it’s not the most valuable 1990 Bo Jackson card. Let’s see how well other 1990 Bo Jackson cards compare with the Bo Knows card.

NameUngradedPSA 9PSA 10
Bo Jackson Kansas City Royals 1990 Baseball Card Boom Magazine #4 Hand Cut CardNA$25$52
1990 Post Cereal First Collector Series Bo Jackson MLB Kansas City Royals$0.30 to $3$30$75
1990 Little Big Leaguers Perforated Bo JacksonNA$14$228
1990 Topps Tiffany Bo Jackson #300$10$38$346
1990 Donruss Aqueous Test Bo Jackson #BC-1NA$399NA
1990 Bowman Tiffany Bo Jackson Kansas City Royals #378$15$40$374
1990 Topps Heads Up! Bo Jackson$10$36$566
1990 Donruss Aqueous Test Bo Jackson #61NA$288$1,599

The 1990 Score Bo Knows card has the largest population of all cards listed. However, despite having the largest population, the 1990 Score Bo Jackson card holds significant value.

While its abundance may suggest a diluted market, the card’s enduring popularity and cultural significance elevate its worth.

Bottomline of the 1990 Score Bo Jackson card

The 1990 Score Bo Jackson card is a remarkable piece of sports memorabilia. It encapsulates the cultural impact and enduring legacy of Bo Jackson.

It perfectly illustrates what made Bo Jackson so special – his ability to play both baseball and football at the highest levels.

Bo Jackson’s exceptional athletic versatility and the card’s association with the iconic Nike “Bo Knows” campaign has made the card a highly sought-after collectible.

While it has a larger population compared to other top Bo Jackson cards, its value remains significant due to the great demand among collectors. The 1990 Scorecard truly holds a special place in the hearts of collectors and is a must-have for any Baseball and Football collection.

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