Saturday, February 06, 2010

Football's Version of the Triple Crown

by Jeff Fisher
High School Football America

I woke-up this morning thinking about how I could tie-in Super Bowl XLIV with high school football, but with more than just the played high school football at so-and-so high school.

My thoughts somehow wandered to baseball and the elusive Triple Crown, which is when a player leads the league in batting average, home runs and RBIs. And no, I'm not like modern day journalists that say it should be RBI without the "s", because they think they are smarter than tradition.
Baseball's last Triple Crown winner was the Red Sox Carl Yastrzemski back in 1967. In over 130 years of professional baseball, there's been only 15 Triple Crown winners with Ted Williams and Rogers Hornsby being two-time winners.

Also, I'm not a horse racing fan, so it's version of the Triple Crown doesn't even come to my mind for this little exercise.

Today's goal is to try to figure-out if any football player has won a Super Bowl, a national championship in college and a high school state championship?

My first thought was Peyton Manning.

Surely the first family of quarterbacks was able to accomplish the feat, but then I remembered, Peyton never won a national championship at Tennessee. My research also showed that despite a 34-5 record as a starter at Isidore Newman High School in New Orleans, Peyton never won a Louisiana state football title.

In high school, Peyton played with his brother Cooper, who caught a doezen of his sophomore brother's 23 TD passes.

So after striking out on my first guess, I decided to start with players that have won a Super Bowl ring and a national championship in college. To my surprise, I could only come-up with nine, and one of the eight, Colts running back Joseph Addai will play in tomorrow's game against the Saints.

Joseph Addai - LSU (2003), Indianapolis Colts (Super Bowl XLI)
Derrick Brooks - Florida St. (1993), Tampa Bay Bucanneers (Super Bowl XXXVII)
Tony Dorsett - Pitt (1976), Dallas Cowboys (Super Bowl XII)
William Floyd - Florida St. (1993), San Francisco 49ers (Super Bowl XXIX)
Michael Irvin - Miami (1987) , Dallas Cowboys (Super Bowl XXVII, XXVIII, XXX)
Joe Montana - Notre Dame (1977), San Francisco 49ers (Super Bowls XVI, XIX, XXIII, XXIV)
Joe Namath - Alabama (1964, New York Jets (Super Bowl III)
Ken Stabler - Alabama (1965), Oakland Raiders (Super Bowl XI)
Grant Wistrom- Nebraska (1994, 1995, 1997), St. Louis Rams (Super Bowl XXXIV)

So with a much smaller list, I was able to come-up with the ONLY player to win a Football Triple Crown.

Grant Wistrom is Mr. Championship having led his Webb City High School football team to two Missouri Class 4A titles in the early 90's. In all, Wistrom has won six championships, and was inducted into the College Football Hall of Fame last year.

What is odd about this journey is the fact that I met Grant back in the early 90's at one of the first national high school football all-star games in Allentown, Pennsylvania. I remember Grant as being a very polite and sincere teenager, who acted a little older than his age.

That's still evident in his charitable work. The Wistrom Family Foundation was created in 2002 to provide pediatric oncology patients a camp experience that is presented in a safe, supportive, happy and medically sound environment.

By the way, Jimmy Johnson (Miami & Cowboys) and Barry Switzer (Oklahoma & Cowboys) are the only two coaches to win a college national championship and a Super Bowl.

In closing this fun little journey, remember it's just me sitting at the computer, so I'm more than willing to get some help from the readers on this one. So if there's someone out there with more knowledge, please email me at

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