Galena Park High School Receives NFL Golden Football
Houston, Texas: As part of the nationwide kickoff to the Super Bowl 50 celebration, the NFL launched a Super Bowl High School Honor Roll initiative recognizing schools and communities that contributed to Super Bowl history and positively impacted the game of football.
High schools across the nation, and around the world, receive a commemorative Wilson Golden Football for every player or head coach who graduated from their school and was on an active Super Bowl roster - a total of nearly 3,000 players and head coaches, and more than 2,000 high schools. Players and coaches will also have the opportunity to personally deliver golden footballs.
On Thursday, November 12, 2015, former Miami Dolphin and Super Bowl champion Howard Twilley delivered a Wilson Golden Football to his high school alma mater, Galena Park High School.
In 1960, Twilley was a defensive back on the junior varsity (JV) team coached by a “tough, old school, blood and guts type of coach,” Jess Sadler. On a hot day in August, the JV team was set to scrimmage the varsity team. As the more talented players were always on the varsity team, things never went well for the JV. However, through the course of the scrimmage, the JV starting tight end was injured. Coach Sadler asked for volunteers to take the injured player’s spot. Twilley, a 141 pound kid, raised his hand. Against the varsity defense, he caught multiple passes, some for touchdowns, and thoroughly impressed everyone on the field. “That day, that moment would change my entire life. It was the defining moment for my football career,” Twilley said.
After graduating from Galena Park High School, Twilley became a star receiver at the University of Tulsa. He was the runner up for the Heisman Trophy in 1965, the same year he held NCAA records for touchdowns (16), passes caught (134), and yards (1,779). He was inducted into the College Football Hall of Fame in 1992 and the Oklahoma Sports Hall of Fame in 1995.
Professionally Twilley played for the Miami Dolphins from 1966, the first year for the expansion team, through1976. Twilley was the only player on the inaugural team who was also on the 1972 Super Bowl VII championship. In that fateful Super Bowl matchup, Twilley caught a 28-yard touchdown pass in their victory over the Redskins. That victory secured them a world championship and the NFL’s only perfect season.
Concluding his speech to the crowd gathered to pay homage to Galena Park High School’s most prolific athlete, Twilley said, “Faith and hard work are important keys to success. I began to learn that at Galena Park High School.” Then with gusto he added, “Once a Yellow Jacket, always a Yellow Jacket!” That statement was met with uproarious applause.
Pictured: Galena Park High School proud graduate and principal Tony Gardea (left) accepts the NFL Golden Football from Howard Twilley (right).
Pictured: The NFL Golden Football is on display at Galena Park High School, an honor brought by NFL two-time Super Bowl Champion and Galena Park High School alumni Howard Twilley.
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