“I’m glad I was able to get the number than I wanted to get -- this is for my friend, Altee Tenpenny, who I played with at Bama,” Henry told ESPN during an appearance promoting Dick’s Sporting Goods as a tailgating headquarters. “He who wore it in high school. So I’m very, very excited about that.”
Tenpenny went to North Little Rock High School in Arkansas. He was at Alabama in 2013 and 2014 before transferring to UNLV and then Nicholls State.
Henry and Tenpenny both participated in Nike’s “The Opening” football camp in the summer of 2011 and again in 2012.
“He was a good friend of mine, basically like a best friend, somebody that I knew since high school, going to camps where we were competing against each other then we both went to Bama together,” Henry said. “He transferred out of Bama and he died in a car crash last year.
Since then, Tenpenny has been on Henry’s mind a lot.
“I try to remember his name and honor his name the best way I can,” he said.
The Heisman Trophy winner said No. 22 was his first choice all along. Henry had wore No. 2 since joining the Titans, with the understanding he would have to wear something between 20 and 49, per NFL rules for running backs, once the regular season started.
At the NFL Rookie Premiere in Los Angeles in May, Henry was photographed wearing No. 24. That number then belonged to cornerback Perrish Cox.
Cox actually gave up 24 in favor of 20 after the Titans made their cuts on Friday. But 22 also became available when the Titans parted ways with veteran running back and return man Dexter McCluster.
“I’m just glad people want to get my jersey,” Henry said of the intrigue surrounding his number. “For people to want my jersey, I’m honored and blessed.”