Super Bowl champ McManus returns home

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Cydney Lee

Brandon McManus poses in the TV Studio during a March 2016 visit to NPHS.

TOWAMENCIN – It was a normal Wednesday afternoon at North Penn High School . . . students roaming the halls and teachers lecturing their classes. But that quickly changed as students began whispering and snapping their necks to get a peek at a man who had just walked in. This tall, polished man sporting an embroidered Nike “2016 Super Bowl 50 champion” quarter zip shirt with a number “8” stitched on the front, was North Penn’s very own Brandon McManus.

The North Penn class of 2009 graduate and now Super Bowl 50 champion tiptoed into the high school sporting his winner’s gear as he made a surprise visit to his alma mater. McManus, who is the kicker for the Denver Broncos, contributed 10 of his team’s total of 24 points, helping to defeat the Carolina Panthers 24-10.

“I prepared my whole life,” he expressed. “I played in two seasons leading up to that game to get myself ready. I didn’t feel very nervous at all for the game. I just knew once I got the first kick out of the way, I should be good. If it came down to me at the end of the game I [knew I] was going to be excited and ready for that opportunity.”

Image courtesy of npsd.phanfare.com
Image courtesy of npsd.phanfare.com

Leading up to Super Bowl 50, North Penn showed their pride and support for McManus by selling bright orange t-shirts with his number “8” printed boldly on the front and back. The hallways were then flooded with orange as students and staff district-wide rocked their homemade jerseys on “Brandon McManus Day”, which was celebrated on February 5th, the last school day before the big game.

“[The support] was very paramount,” McManus professed. “I couldn’t thank the community enough and everybody for buying the t-shirts and showing the support. I definitely saw all of your messages and tweets and Facebook posts about it. I can’t thank them enough. Just to have the support back home, it means a lot of people are rooting for you and it does put a little pressure on you to not let them down. But games [with] that magnitude, you kind of need some added pressure. I definitely wanted to succeed and perform well for everyone back home and hopefully I made [the community] proud and helped celebrate this Super Bowl win with them.”

Not only is he now a Super Bowl champion, but McManus is also the founder of the Anti Bully Squad (ABS) campaign. In a world where bullying is omnipresent and comes in all forms, ABS’s mission is to “create a permanent solution to bullying through education, awareness, and prevention”. In gratitude to his valuable cause, the North Penn Student Government Association (NPSGA) presented him with a check for $2500 to go towards his charity.

Brandon McManus autographs the check presented to him on behalf of the Anti-Bully Squad.
Cydney Lee
Brandon McManus autographs the check presented to him on behalf of the Anti-Bully Squad.

“Thank you very much,” he stated. “I got a lot of tweets about the photos of you guys raising the money [selling] the t-shirts. I definitely felt a lot of support out there in California and I want to thank all [of] you guys for having the initiative to come up with that idea and help raise some money for my foundation in which we could greatly use. Thank you again.”

McManus, who says the experience is still so surreal to him, feels honored to have a crucial part of the Denver Broncos organization, especially on the night of February 7th. He believes that his individual, as well as his team’s accomplishments, won’t hit him until they receive their rings in August.

“Just watching the confetti come down and having my family up there to help support me and enjoy that moment with me was something special that I will never forget. I’m excited to continue the journey with my wife and I’m looking forward to hopefully hoisting another Lombardi Trophy and having a long career in the NFL continuing to perform at a high level . . . hopefully playing until I’m 40 [so] my kids can enjoy me playing in NFL games” McManus concluded.