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Sports

January 30, 2012

Lucky Number

The number 46 doesn't seem like much of a number for a hockey player.

But it's the ultimate number when your last name is Farnham.

Bobby Farnham isn't your "traditional" Farnham, though. Unlike most of that family of gifted athletes, he hails from North Andover, not Andover. Also, his sport of choice is hockey, not football.

The Brown senior assistant captain actually wore No. 10 as a freshman. He switched to the "Farnham 46" and perhaps not coincidentally his game took off.

"It means a lot," said Farnham, who is the third leading scorer for the 8-10-3 Bears with six goals and nine assists. "I'm the fifth Farnham at Brown and the first in hockey. I thought it was a different sport. Then I thought it would be pretty cool to wear it. I see pictures of my dad and two uncles and cousin wearing it. It's a real honor."

His father, Robert (Class of '77), and his uncle Mark ('80) are in the Brown Hall of Fame for their football heroics and Mark also was a lacrosse star. Robert, who earned a tryout with the Cleveland Browns, was one of four receivers selected to Brown's 125th anniversary team.

His cousin, Buddy ('10), will undoubtedly be a first-ballot Hall of Famer. And his uncle, Paul ('83), also was an All-Ivy Leaguer.

In many ways, it's an impossible standard to live up. But in some ways, future generations of talented Farnhams will be inspired to live up to Bobby's all-around brilliance.

He has a GPA in the 3.6-3.7 range with a perfect 4.0 in the fall. In late August, he and five teammates helped save three teenagers who were struggling in riptides. He's also involved in a slew of charitable endeavors.

Bears coach Brendan Whittet didn't sound overly surprised at Farnham's actions potentially saving lives this summer.

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