Commentary

Super showcase for 3 high schools

Updated: February 4, 2010, 2:16 PM ET
By Mark Tennis | ESPN RISE

Bullitt/LaceyScott Rovak/US PresswireJacob Lacey (left) and Melvin Bullitt were well acquainted before sharing space in the Colts' secondary.

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When considering the accomplishment of a single high school having multiple alumni in a Super Bowl, consider this:

*This year's participants in the BCS National Championship, Alabama and Texas, have one player each.

*Rutgers is ecstatic as this is the first time two players from that college will be appearing in the game.

At Super Bowl XLIV, three high schools will have two graduates appearing in the biggest spectacle in American professional sport.

At Naaman Forest (Garland, Texas), the Super Bowl fever that may have gone to the nearby Dallas Cowboys instead will be directed toward the Indianapolis Colts. Both players from Naaman Forest who will be in the game -- safety Melvin Bullitt and cornerback Jacob Lacey -- are on the Colts' roster.

And to make their story more hard to believe, Bullitt and Lacey were once on the same team at Naaman Forest, starting alongside each other in 2002 when Bullitt was a senior and Lacey was a sophomore.

"It's pretty neat and makes me proud," said current Naaman Forest receiver John Harris, who will sign a letter of intent this week with Texas. "I actually know Melvin, but I haven't met Jacob. Two guys from the same high school program is just great."

With both players on the same side of the ball for the same team, it's also easy to guess which team Harris is rooting for on Sunday.

"Of course, it's the Colts," Harris said. "It is very inspiring to know that two guys who were once in my position at this school are going to be in the Super Bowl."

For the same reason, you might expect quarterback David Piland from Southlake Carroll (Southlake, Texas) to be pulling for New Orleans on Sunday. Two players on the Saints -- third-string quarterback Chase Daniel and kicker Garrett Hartley, whose overtime field goal put New Orleans in its first Super Bowl -- played at Southlake Carroll.

David Piland
Tom Hauck for ESPN.comOne might expect David Piland to root for Southlake Carroll (Carroll, Texas) alums Chase Daniel and Garrett Hartley of the Saints come Super Sunday. Not so fast; Piland is a Peyton Manning fan.

The difference between Harris and Piland, however, is Piland's favorite player is Peyton Manning.

"I've always been a Colts' fan, so I'm a little in-between," said Piland, a Houston recruit. "If Chase were to somehow get in the game, though, I'm all-in for the Saints."

Piland pointed out that three Southlake Carroll players also appeared in the BCS title game, including Alabama quarterback Greg McElroy.

"Someday, you know that it could be you in their shoes," Piland said. "It does get you pumped up. Every day when it's time to wake up, it's time to go to work."

Daniel was the Dragons' starting quarterback as a junior in 2003 when Hartley was the team's senior kicker. That season, Southlake Carroll was undefeated until losing, 16-15, to Katy (Katy, Texas) in the Class 5A Division I state championship.

The third high school with two players in this year's Super Bowl is Homestead (Homestead, Fla.). Unlike Naaman Forest and Southlake Carroll, Homestead's alliance may be split. Defensive tackle Eric Foster plays for the Colts, while defensive end Bobby McCray plays for the Saints.

While some folks in Homestead figure to be torn over which team to favor in the Super Bowl, the school's head coach will have no such problem. He happens to be Bobby McCray Sr., the father of the Saints' player.