INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. (Feb. 5, 2016)-- Even a Super Bowl champion gets a little emotional talking about his hometown idol.
“He was like the star receiver so that was like somebody that I really looked up to,” North Central graduate Courtney Roby recalled.
“He was real good friends with my dad,” Roby said. “He went here.”
Before Roby won a Super Bowl title with the Saints, he idolized another Panther product, Derrick Mayes, who won an NFL title of his own with the Packers.
“Sitting in those same stands knowing that kids look at you the same way you looked at somebody else is pretty crazy,” Roby said.
Now an idol in his own right, Roby returned to his alma mater hoping to make an impact on those kids now walking the same halls he once did.
Joined by fellow Super Bowl champs and Indy natives Rosevelt Colvin and Mathias Kiwanuka, Roby brought along an NFL honor, a “golden football” commemorating the Super Bowl’s 50th anniversary, and a message.
“The things that I want to stress is just work hard, in whatever you do , whether it’s athletics, whether you want to be a doctor, if you want to own your own business, whatever the case may be, work hard at your craft,” he told student-athletes during a strength training class at NCHS.
“If you ever doubt yourself or if you ever question yourself, look at us,” as he pointed to Colvin and Kiwanuka. “We were in your position.”
A chance to celebrate the people and the program that helped him earn a scholarship to Indiana.
“These were the guys that were with me when I was a kid trying to be something,” Roby said of Principal Evans Branigan and his staff.
As he addressed the dozens of wide-eyed teenagers gathered around, Roby remembering himself as one of those student-athletes in awe of a champion.
“I saw myself in each one of those kids because I was them. I was a kid with dreams and aspirations.”
Now hoping to be an inspiration beyond the football field.
“I don’t want everyone to always hang onto the fact of being an athlete or whatever the case may be because there are so many more important people in this world who are great role models and individuals that had goals and aspirations to reach,” Roby said.
“ I just want to emphasis that it’s not only about football – it’s about life in general.”