HUEYTOWN, Ala. (WIAT) — Tampa Bay Buccaneers Quarterback Jameis Winston made a $100,000 donation to Hueytown Highschool and Hueytown Middle School to be used for athletics.
In a statement, Jameis Winston said, “It’s a blessing that I’m able to give back to the community that has given so much to me. I hope this donation will help encourage kids to excel academically and athletically.”
Winston graduated from Hueytown High School in 2012. During his time there he led the Golden Gophers to the semi0finals and was also named Gatorade National Player of the Year.
In his college years, Winston won the Heisman Trophy in 2013, assisting in leading Florida State to a BCS National Championship. The Tampa Bay Buccaneers drafted him as the first overall pick in 2015.
Joseph Garner, Ph.D., principal of Hueytown High School, joined Hueytown Head Football Coach Greg Patterson on CBS 42 Morning News to talk about how the donation will benefit their program.
Garner said, “I was quite surprised. I’ve been principal at Hueytown for five years now, and we’ve been communicating with Jameis and his family and really trying to establish and build upon that relationship and we had no indication that he was making a donation. So when the call [about the donation] came we were like ‘What? What happened?’ So [we’re] very pleasantly surprised.”
Coach Patterson said the donation will help the athletic program.
Patterson explained, “It allows us to help kids in so many different ways. That’s our main focus every day, to provide for those student-athletes the best we can whether it’s equipment, nutrition or whatever, it just opens up a lot of doors for us to help them.”
Garner said the relationship with Winston is important.
Garner explained, “The relationship is important because we need that additional support. If we’re trying to change and improve the lives of every young man and young lady to have a relationship where we can get that additional support, it helps us encourage, push, challenge [the youth] to be better than they are today, not only athletically but artistically, academically and socially.”
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