Pro Football Hall of Fame quarterback Dan Fouts, a six-time Pro Bowl selection for the San Diego Chargers, was honored on Tuesday, April 23, as a “Hometown Hall of Famer™” by the Pro Football Hall of Fame and Allstate Insurance Company. The special plaque ceremony was held in the McCollough gym of St. Ignatius College Preparatory in San Francisco where Fouts was a standout student athlete.
The gymnasium was filled with the entire student body, friends, family and former teammates, all of whom were visibly excited to celebrate the achievements of one of their own.
To start the ceremony, a highlight video of Fouts’ career was played and anticipation built as everyone in the gymnasium waited for the NFL legend to appear. Following an introduction from John Knight, President of St. Ignatius, Fouts entered from the side of the gymnasium and was instantly met with a standing ovation, loud cheers, and a rousing rendition of the school fight song performed by the school band.
Bob Sarlatte, one of Fouts former high school teammates and nationally known comedian and radio/TV personality, served as the event’s plaque presenter and delivered a very energetic and captivating speech that touched on Fouts’ confidence and determination.
Fouts stepped up to unveil the plaque with a huge smile on his face, clearly excited to be back at his alma mater surrounded by friends and family, including his parents. “To come back to where it all began is surreal,” said Fouts. “Seeing old teammates and coaches means so much to me.” Fouts went on to say that the teammates who were there to support him, members of the 1967 team, were the greatest group of players he had the pleasure of playing for and with during his career.
Closing his speech, Fouts looked around the gymnasium at all of the students and said, “Be prepared for everything and anything that comes your way and give each and every opportunity your all.”
In addition to the plaque, a commemorative Dan Fouts “Hometown Hall of Famer™” road sign will be on display in San Francisco.
Additional speakers included Yumi Sam, local San Francisco Allstate agent, and Brock Richards, Pro Football Hall of Fame Enterprises Program Director.
“This plaque could be placed at the Pro Football Hall of Fame,” said Richards. “But instead it will live here at St. Ignatius and serve as a reminder that each of you can be a Hall of Famer in anything you choose to pursue.”
An All-Pac 8 quarterback at the University of Oregon, Fouts was the third-round draft pick of the San Diego Chargers in 1973. He played for the Chargers for 15 seasons before retiring. Fouts played a major role in transforming the Chargers from also-rans to AFC Western Division champions in 1979, 1980 and 1981. In 15 seasons, Fouts completed 3,297 passes for 43,040 yards and 254 touchdowns and an 80.2-point passer rating, while also rushing for 476 yards and scored 13 touchdowns. He led the NFL in passing yardage four straight years from 1979 to 1982, and became the first player in history to throw for 4,000 yards in three consecutive seasons.
“Today, I could not be more privileged to recognize Pro Football Hall of Fame member Dan Fouts as a hometown plaque recipient here in the city of San Francisco,” said Sam. “To be part of a program that brings the prestige and tradition of the Pro Football Hall of Fame to cities like San Francisco is an honor for Allstate and our employees and agents across the country.”
Fouts was inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 1993.
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