Azusa High School students gathered in their gym and cheered in celebration of receiving the commemorative Wilson Golden Football, awarded to high schools and communities that contributed to Super Bowl history.
Azusa High was recognized on the Super Bowl High School Honor Roll in honor of native Azusan Billy Kilmer, who quarterbacked for the Washington Redskins at Super Bowl VII in 1978.
“Billy Kilmer worked really hard to ensure that his dreams became a reality, and he didn’t accomplish this alone,” Principal Ramiro Rubalcaba told Aztecs during a Feb. 2 awards ceremony. “He had the help of his teachers, administrators, coaches, friends and teammates who supported him in achieving his goals.”
Kilmer graduated from Citrus Union High School, which has since been closed. He continued to play college football at Citrus Junior College and transferred to UCLA, where he was a contender for the Heisman Trophy. He also played for the San Francisco 49ers and the New Orleans Saints.
“It is such an honor for Azusa High to receive this award,” said Athletic Director Sandy Gahring, also an Azusa High alumni. “It brings so much encouragement to our student athletes that a successful, professional athlete grew up in the same streets that they did.”
The Super Bowl High School Honor Roll initiative is part of the NFL’s Super Bowl 50 outreach program, which links the past 49 Super Bowls with this year’s game and honors the high schools and communities that have benefited the game of football.
Schools across the country will receive a commemorative Wilson Golden Football for each Super Bowl player or head coach who graduated from their school or community. Nearly 3,000 players and head coaches, and more than 2,000 high schools, will be recognized.
“Billy Kilmer is an example of the dedication and determination that each one of our students possesses,” Superintendent Dr. Linda Kaminski said. “We are grateful to the NFL for recognizing the strong history of achievements in our city, as our students today continually reach higher in their academic endeavors as they pursue their passions.”
The NFL Foundation will also provide the schools with a new character education curriculum and the opportunity to apply for grants of up to $5,000 to help support and grow their football programs.
“This recognition shows our students that no matter what challenges they may face, if they continually work hard toward their goals, they will achieve whatever they set their minds to,” Board President Yolanda Rodriguez-Peña said. “The students of Azusa Unified are talented and it makes me proud to see them recognized for their achievements – both while they’re in our schools and long after they’ve graduated.”
GOLDENFOOTBALL1: Azusa Unified School District Superintendent Dr. Linda Kaminski (right) hands the Wilson Golden Football to head football coach Joe Scherf at an awards ceremony at the Azusa High School gym on Feb. 2. The Super Bowl High School Honor Roll initiative is part of the NFL’s Super Bowl 50 outreach program, which links the past 49 Super Bowls with this year’s game and honors the high schools and communities that have positively impacted the game of football.
GOLDENFOOTBALL2: The Azusa High School coaching team with the commemorative Wilson Golden Football. The NFL Foundation will provide the schools with a new character education curriculum and the opportunity to apply for grants of up to $5,000 to help support and grow their football programs.
GOLDENFOOTBALL3: Azusa Unified School District and City of Azusa officials and Azusa High School football team, JROTC, staff and administrators pose with the commemorative Wilson Golden Football, in honor of native Azusan Billy Kilmer, who played as quarterback for the Washington Redskins at Super Bowl VII in 1978.