The New Haven (Conn.) Public Schools (NHPS) today renamed its athletic center after Pro Football Hall of Fame running back . The Class of 2010 enshrinee and New Haven native played his high school football at Hillhouse High School in Connecticut.
Little, who starred for nine seasons with the Denver Broncos from 1967 to 1975, was on hand Thursday in New Haven to cut the ribbon on the newly christened Athletic Center. The 105,000-square foot facility opened in 2002 is the largest scholastic athletic facility in New England. The center also includes photos, murals, and memorabilia from Little’s spectacular athletic career. He played his college football at the University of Syracuse where he recently became the special assistant to the athletic director.
“I’m very proud to help dedicate the Athletic Center,” Superintendent of Schools Dr. Reginald Mayo said about Little who earned a law degree and also enjoyed a successful career in business after football. “ is a shining example to New Haven’s young people. Floyd is a star not just in football, but in academic achievement and in life. Floyd’s life demonstrates the vital importance of graduating from college, a message that we want all New Haven students to hear so they will strive for New Haven Promise scholarships.
“Floyd came from the humblest of backgrounds and struggled in school, but through hard work and determination turned around his grades. He eventually excelled, earning college and law degrees,” continued Mayo. “Floyd understands that success off the field is just as important as success on the field, a powerful message to our young people. His story tells our young people that anything is possible if they work hard and try their best.”
Little was the first round draft pick of the Broncos in 1967 and amassed more than 12,000 all-purpose yards and scored 54 touchdowns in his pro football career. He became the third long-time member of the Broncos franchise to earn election to the Pro Football Hall of Fame.
“Entering the Pro Football Hall of Fame is a cut above all of the awards I’ve received in sports,” Little told the New Haven Register in an interview last weekend. “It’s historical. But when you put it in perspective, I’m one of 267 people in the Hall of Fame. I’m bust number 257 of 267. But how many people enshrined in Canton have a building with their name on it? That’s something that perpetuates you. That’s what makes me say, ‘Wow.’”
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