High school refuses to hang Vick’s jersey

THE NEWS: Newport News Warwick (Va.) high school has framed their legendary quarterback, Michael Vick’s, No. 7 high school jersey – years ago; however, after a few extremely rocky years for Vick, this season’s NFL Comeback POY, the school has taken it down from its hanging point in one of the school’s hallways.

And the administration, much to the dismay of the students attending the school, has still refused to rehang the jersey despite Vick’s radiant success this season as the starting quarterback of the Philadelphia Eagles.

Despite, even, Facebook groups petitioning for the school to rehang the famed jersey, the school has remained strong on its views.

Newport News Public Schools spokesperson told the Virginia-Pilot that the decision is final and has been made to avoid distraction and “finish the school year strong.”

One high school student, who disagrees with the administration, said the jersey should be reframed and rehanged because Vick has been an “inspiration” to high school students based on how he has dug himself out of the hole he was in.

THE OPINION: That last paragraph is a good segway for me, I suppose, because I choose to focus on the fact that Vick has done his time and learned from his past behaviors. From everything I’ve seen of Vick speaking in public, he seems more mature.

Prison must have been good for Vick… that, and Tony Dungy. However, I side with the students – not just as a student myself. Vick is that high school’s national legacy. He is the prize that came from that school. Arguably, that school produced the most exciting NFL quarterback – maybe NFL player – of all time.

And they aren’t willing to flaunt that? Boy, if I was the principal or an administrator… I’d milk that for everything it was worth.

I completely understand taking the jersey down when Vick was serving his sentence, during the investigation and even when the world didn’t think Vick would ever play again. Now, things are different.

Vick is not a popular public speaker. He has revisited prison, for example, to speak to inmates. He has talked to high school kids about his rocky journey. He is doing everything right.

For the people that say: “He’s a dog killer.” Well, that’s true; however, he has learned from that. This high school Vick went to is not a suburban catholic school. No, this high school is a rough one. Virginia is a rough state in general.

Vick was involved, at a young age, in the NFL, with the wrong crowd, which led him to do what he did. Now it seems he has reorganized his Facebook “friends list” and found some better people to surround him with – i.e. Tony Dungy.

Also, Vick is not leaving his past in his past, so to speak. He is addressing the issue. Vick knows he is going to have to answer questions about what he did. He knows that he will have to deal with picketers, haters, and other people that aren’t fans of Vick. Those kinds of things are going to happen. Vick will forever have to live with what he did.

He wasn’t doing that in high school, though. In high school, he brought that school excitement, happiness, wins, etc. He brought a lot to that school.

The school should rehang that jersey because they need to realize what they had. Vick is on the fast track back to the top of the NFL. I mean, he could have won the NFL MVP this season. Rehang the jersey, and be proud of the four years that Michael Vick roamed those halls.

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About Alex McNamee

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