Class of 2003 enshrinee was honored on Tuesday as part of the Pro Football Hall of Fame and Allstate Insurance Company’s Hometown Hall of Famer™ program. The Hall of Fame running back was the center of attention at his alma mater Lincoln High School in San Diego, Calif.
Allen was presented with the historic “Hometown Hall of Famer™” plaque by his mother Gwen Allen. The ceremony took place in the school’s auditorium in front of more than 400 students, former teammates, coaches and family. The plaque, which will live permanently within the halls of Lincoln High School, will serve as an inspiration to students that they too can achieve Hall of Fame status in whatever field they choose.
“People told me not to go to Lincoln High School," stated Allen. "But I did. And look where I am now and we are today. I never regretted that decision and I found an outpouring of love and support from this community along the way.”
The ceremony, complete with a drum line and dance team performance, was emceed by Athletic Director Don Robinson. Those in attendance had the opportunity to hear from Allen on the lessons he learned during his playing days at Lincoln High School and how he carried them throughout his career. Guests on hand also heard a lively performance of the national anthem from Allen’s sister, Michelle, and a rendition of the old Lincoln High School fight song performed by the student choir with Allen himself joining in the song.
Aside from Allen’s mother, the ceremony also featured Pro Football Hall of Fame Enterprises President & CEO George Veras, Allstate Insurance representative Freddy Santos and Allstate’s senior Vice President of Marketing Lisa Cochrane all of whom addressed the crowd.
“To be part of a program that brings the prestige and tradition of the Pro Football Hall of Fame to communities like San Diego and to Lincoln High School is an honor for Allstate, our agents and employees,” said Cochrane.
After playing quarterback and safety at Lincoln, Allen transitioned to running back when he enrolled at the University of Southern California. He made NCAA history with the Trojans when he rushed for more than 2,000 yards in a season and was named the 1981 winner of the Heisman Trophy. He remains one of just eight members of the Pro Football Hall of Fame to have won the Heisman Trophy
as the best college player in the nation.
Allen’s NFL career began in 1982 when he was selected 10th overall by the Los Angeles Raiders. He starred for the Raiders from 1982-1992 and finished his career by playing five seasons with the Kansas City Chiefs (1993-97). He is the first player ever to rush for 10,000 yards and have 5,000 yards receiving in a career.
“Hometown Hall of Famers™” will next honor former New York Giants and Washington Redskins linebacker Sam Huff in Farmington, W.Va., on March 12.
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