As good as gold

Devin Daley

On Jan, 26, 1986, the Chicago Bears beat the New England Patriots to win Super Bowl XX and cap off a season that would put the team in the history books for years to come as one of the all time great teams in NFL history. This year to celebrate fiftieth Super Bowl the NFL is giving any player to appear in a Super Bowl a golden football to commemorate their appearances that in turn the player is to give to their high school football program as an acknowledgement of the program’s ability to produce an elite talent. On Feb. 6, Freedom graduate and Super Bowl champion Jimbo Covert came to the Freedom football banquet to present the program with their award.
The Freedom football banquet is a yearly event that allows the football team and cheerleaders to enjoy a formal event together after the season and gives them the opportunity to reflect on all aspects of the season regardless of how the season went. This year was slightly different however because of the recent hiring of Tom Liberty to replace Tim Dubovi as football coach as well as Covert being present as the guest speaker. These variables made this year’s banquet more focused on the future of Freedom football rather than the past.
Focusing on the future was a
major theme during Covert’s speech that accompanied the presentation of the golden football. During his speech Covert talked of how in his first three years of high school football Freedom was not very successful with an the team only winning two games in his Junior team just as this year’s team did. His senior year however was different as the team went 10-0 in the regular season earning them the conference championship. A major change that Covert attributed the team’s success to was the change in mentality that happened in the summer before.
“In the Spring and Summer following my junior year there was a big change in mentality as we started talking about winning a championship. We started working harder and some of us went to both the morning and the afternoon workouts that went on in the summer so that people who worked could attend at least one. That was when yous started to see a change and we started to think that winning the conference was a very real possibility,” Covert said during his speech before the presentation of the golden football.
Throughout the rest of his speech Covert related the team from his junior year to this past year’s team and encouraged the players going forward to put in the work in order to succeed next year.
“It’s an honor that the football is going into our trophy case at Freedom rather than Covert’s personal one. Knowing he still thinks of Freedom as his home is a great thing for the program,” Junior Nick Henderson said after the banquet about what Covert attending the banquet meant to him in terms of the programs history.
Whether or not next year’s team will be able to replicate the efforts of the 1978 team is yet to be seen but Covert’s advice may help the players move forward and win next year.
“In order to do anything you have to dream it, see it, work for it, and then you will achieve it,” Covert told the players.