It was pretty much destined to happen as soon as he strapped on a helmet for the New York Jets way back in 1999 as an undrafted rookie out of Georgia. His chances were only bolstered in 2000 when, in his second year in the NFL, he signed on with his hometown team the New England Patriots. And in 2001, he might as well have started planning the date with his alma mater, East Boston High School, for the ceremony in which the school would retire his jersey.
The date has come for Jermaine Wiggins, the retired NFL tight end who won a Super Bowl with Patriots in 2001. Wiggins will have his jersey retired at Airport Stadium in East Boston tonight, along with longtime coach John Sousa, when the Jets host Boston English. It will be a long overdue honor for the North Shore resident who continues to opine and analyze football on TV, radio and on the web. He also runs a football program on the North Shore for young football players, “Train like a Pro … With a Pro.” (Editor’s Note: Wiggins also contributes to a weekly video series on Boston.com called “Inside the Playbook.”)
“You know I didn’t really expect it,” Wiggins explained. “It wasn’t something I thought about.
“I was a good player in high school, [but] more of a basketball player,” Wiggins continued. “I didn’t set a whole lot of records. Basketball is more of where I laid my hat.”
Wiggins’ old basketball coach, Michael Rubin, now the headmaster at East Boston High School, approached him about being getting his jersey retired.
“Hopefully, it’ll show my kids that with hard work -- and the kids that go to East Boston high school, -- is that anything can be done,” Wiggins said. “To me, that’s the biggest accomplishment. Is, you know, have those kids see that.”
Several reporters and editors contribute updates, news and analysis to the High School Sports Blog.
- Bob Holmes: A Reading resident (Go Rockets!) and Boston College graduate, Holmes is the Boston Globe High School Sports Editor. We remind you now that his weekly picks are often made in jest so everyone just calm down when he picks against Everett for 11 straight weeks. Contact him at email@example.com. Follow him on Twitter @GlobeHolmes.
- Craig Larson: A native of West Springfield (Leo Durocher anyone? Tim Daggett?) and Curry College graduate (a proud Colonel!), Larson is the sports editor for the Globe's regional sections: South, West and North, as well as a frequent contributor on the college beat. Abington to Xaverian: it all starts with the schools. Have a compelling story idea? Contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him on Twitter @GlobeLars.
- Zuri Berry: Berry attended the same high school as sports legends O.J. Simpson and Joe DiMaggio. (Guess which one is his hero.) He's a South Boston resident (formerly of Eastie) and the editor of the High School Sports blog as well as the go-to-guy for everything high school sports on Boston.com. Contact him at email@example.com and follow him on Twitter @GlobeSchools for all of the latest updates.
Then there are our winter correspondents:
- Emily McCarthy | @EmilyMcCahthy | BPS correspondent
- Jake Fischer | @GlobeFischer | Boys basketball
- Michelle Fenelon | @michfenelon | Girls basketball
- Andrew MacDougall | @Andy_MacDougall | Boys hockey
- Liz Torres | @etorres446 | Girls hockey
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