JEMS receives Golden Football


Award honors Jonesville High School

By Charles Warner - cwarner@civitasmedia.com



Charles Warner | The Union Times This Golden Football was presented to Jonesville Elementary/Middle School during a ceremony Friday afternoon. The Golden Football celebrates the role Jonesville High School played in helping develop and support the career of Jim Youngblood. Youngblood, a Jonesville High graduate, played on the high school’s football team and went on to play for the Los Angeles Rams in Super Bowl XIV.


Charles Warner | The Union Times Jim Youngblood addresses the faculty and student body of Jonesville Elementary/Middle School prior to presenting the school’s football team with the Golden Football honoring Jonesville High School. Jonesville High is one of the high schools in the country to receive a Golden Football honoring it for its role in helping develop players and coaches who have been in the Super Bowl. As a member of the Los Angeles Rams, Youngblood played in Super Bowl XIV.


Charles Warner | The Union Times Jonesville High School graduate and Super Bowl XIV veteran Jim Youngblood presents a Golden Football to Hagan Blackwell and Jaylen Murphy of the Jonesville Elementary School Wildcats football team. Jonesville High is one of the high schools in the country to receive a Golden Football honoring it for its role in helping develop players and coaches who have been in the Super Bowl. Since the high school no longer exists the Golden Football was presented to JEMS.


Charles Warner | The Union Times Former Jonesville High School Wildcats football player and Super Bowl XIV veteran Jim Youngblood holds the Golden Football he presented to Jonesville Elementary/Middle School while posing in front of his old Wildcats football jersey. Posing for the picture with Youngblood are Stan Gallman and Pat Littlejohn, both who went to school with and played sports with Youngblood growing up.


JONESVILLE — A Jonesville High School graduate and member of the school’s Wildcats football team who went on to play in the Superbowl returned home to present Jonesville Elementary/Middle School with a Golden Football.

In what he said was his first visit to JEMS, Jim Youngblood addressed the school’s student body and faculty before presenting the school’s football team, also called the Wildcats, with the Golden Football that signifies the school is part of the Super Bowl High School Honor Roll.

JEMS Principal Kathy Taylor told the students that “in honor the 50th Super Bowl, the NFL wanted to celebrate players and coaches of the past 49 Super Bowls and their communities by presenting their high schools with a Golden Football.” Taylor said that since Jonesville High School no longer exists, JEMS was receiving the Golden Football which was being presented by Youngblood.

According to the National Football League website (www.nfl.com) the Super Bowl High School Honor Roll “celebrates the high schools and communities that have contributed to Super Bowl history. This platform is designed to link the past 49 Super Bowls with this year’s game and honor the high schools and communities that have positively impacted the game. More than 2,000 schools and nearly 3,000 individuals will be honored through this program.

JEMS Principal Kathy Taylor told the students that “in honor the 50th Super Bowl, the NFL wanted to celebrate players and coaches of the past 49 Super Bowls and their communities by presenting their high schools with a Golden Football.” Taylor said that since Jonesville High School no longer exists, JEMS was receiving the Golden Football which was being presented by Youngblood.

“Football has always been about more than wins and losses,” Taylor said. “The game teaches valuable life skills that can last a lifetime. The National Football League honors Jonesville High School and its role in developing and supporting the career of Jim Youngblood who was part of Super Bowl XIV as a linebacker for the Los Angeles Rams.”

Youngblood was introduced by Pat Littlejohn who said that he and Youngblood, who he called “Bo,” attended school together from first grade through they senior year in high school. Littlejohn said told the students to never forget where they come from, pointing out that when asked Youngblood is never afraid to tell people that he is from Jonesville. He also told students that if they work hard and put their trust in God they can be anything they want to be.

Littlejohn talked about Youngblood’s involvement in sports, saying that he’d joined the varsity football team in the seventh grade and had been a starting player in the 8th, 9th, 10th, 11th, and 12th grades. He said that Younblood was a starting guard in the 8th grade, but that as a member of the Wildcats he had played wherever he was needed.

Looking back at their years growing up, Littlejohn described Youngblood as “a friend to the end,” but added that on the playing field he was a “fierce competitor.”

Littlejohn then talked about Youngblood’s post-Wildcats career, pointing out that he’d attended and played football at Tennessee Tech where he was Junior Starter and Player of the Year. He was drafted by the Los Angeles Rams and would be a member of that team when it played in Superbowl XIV.

Littlejohn recalled watching that game, telling students that he’d thought “this is my friend, one of my best friends and he’s starting for the Rams in the Super Bowl.” He said similar reactions were felt through the Jonesville community during that game.

Following Littlejohn’s introduction, Youngblood spoke, reiterating what his friend said about never forgetting where you come from.

“I have never been afraid to say I’m from Jonesville High School, that I’m from Jonesville,” Youngblood said.

Youngblood told students that over the course of his life “I had opportunities and I made the best of it. It wasn’t easy, but knowing that I know now if I had to do it all over again I’d do the same.”

Youngblood told students that he’d set goals for himself and had worked to achieve them and while some, like winning the Super Bowl had never been realized, others, like playing for 10 years in the NFL and being named Most Valuable Player, had been in achieved. In the case of Most Valuable Player, Youngblood received that designation three times in the course of his football career.

Youngblood spoke to the students in the school gym and while most of the students either sat on the bleachers or on the floor, the school’s football teams stood along the wall. He looked at them and recalled how that while it had been at Jonesville High — Friday, Youngblood said, was his first visit to JEMS — he remembered standing like they were. Youngblood encouraged them to continue to play football when they left JEMS and wished them good luck.

As he prepared to present the Golden Football to the team, Youngblood told the students and faculty that they could be proud to receive the Golden Football because they were on of the schools in America to receive one.

“Jonesville can be proud to have a Golden Football,” Youngblood said. “Good luck to all of you.”

Charles Warner | The Union Times This Golden Football was presented to Jonesville Elementary/Middle School during a ceremony Friday afternoon. The Golden Football celebrates the role Jonesville High School played in helping develop and support the career of Jim Youngblood. Youngblood, a Jonesville High graduate, played on the high school’s football team and went on to play for the Los Angeles Rams in Super Bowl XIV.
http://uniondailytimes.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/03/web1_IMG_0015.jpgCharles Warner | The Union Times This Golden Football was presented to Jonesville Elementary/Middle School during a ceremony Friday afternoon. The Golden Football celebrates the role Jonesville High School played in helping develop and support the career of Jim Youngblood. Youngblood, a Jonesville High graduate, played on the high school’s football team and went on to play for the Los Angeles Rams in Super Bowl XIV.

Charles Warner | The Union Times Jim Youngblood addresses the faculty and student body of Jonesville Elementary/Middle School prior to presenting the school’s football team with the Golden Football honoring Jonesville High School. Jonesville High is one of the high schools in the country to receive a Golden Football honoring it for its role in helping develop players and coaches who have been in the Super Bowl. As a member of the Los Angeles Rams, Youngblood played in Super Bowl XIV.
http://uniondailytimes.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/03/web1_IMG_0029.jpgCharles Warner | The Union Times Jim Youngblood addresses the faculty and student body of Jonesville Elementary/Middle School prior to presenting the school’s football team with the Golden Football honoring Jonesville High School. Jonesville High is one of the high schools in the country to receive a Golden Football honoring it for its role in helping develop players and coaches who have been in the Super Bowl. As a member of the Los Angeles Rams, Youngblood played in Super Bowl XIV.

Charles Warner | The Union Times Jonesville High School graduate and Super Bowl XIV veteran Jim Youngblood presents a Golden Football to Hagan Blackwell and Jaylen Murphy of the Jonesville Elementary School Wildcats football team. Jonesville High is one of the high schools in the country to receive a Golden Football honoring it for its role in helping develop players and coaches who have been in the Super Bowl. Since the high school no longer exists the Golden Football was presented to JEMS.
http://uniondailytimes.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/03/web1_IMG_0031.jpgCharles Warner | The Union Times Jonesville High School graduate and Super Bowl XIV veteran Jim Youngblood presents a Golden Football to Hagan Blackwell and Jaylen Murphy of the Jonesville Elementary School Wildcats football team. Jonesville High is one of the high schools in the country to receive a Golden Football honoring it for its role in helping develop players and coaches who have been in the Super Bowl. Since the high school no longer exists the Golden Football was presented to JEMS.

Charles Warner | The Union Times Former Jonesville High School Wildcats football player and Super Bowl XIV veteran Jim Youngblood holds the Golden Football he presented to Jonesville Elementary/Middle School while posing in front of his old Wildcats football jersey. Posing for the picture with Youngblood are Stan Gallman and Pat Littlejohn, both who went to school with and played sports with Youngblood growing up.
http://uniondailytimes.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/03/web1_IMG_0033.jpgCharles Warner | The Union Times Former Jonesville High School Wildcats football player and Super Bowl XIV veteran Jim Youngblood holds the Golden Football he presented to Jonesville Elementary/Middle School while posing in front of his old Wildcats football jersey. Posing for the picture with Youngblood are Stan Gallman and Pat Littlejohn, both who went to school with and played sports with Youngblood growing up.
Award honors Jonesville High School

By Charles Warner

cwarner@civitasmedia.com

Charles Warner can be reached at 864-762-4090 or cwarner@civitasmedia.com.

Charles Warner can be reached at 864-762-4090 or cwarner@civitasmedia.com.

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