Super Bowl champ returns to Big Island alma mater

Super Bowl champion and Seattle Seahawks center Max Unger is back in the islands.

On Wednesday, Unger spent the day at his alma mater, Hawaii Preparatory Academy, on Hawaii island. The school held a special assembly honoring Unger and his accomplishments and retired his number, 77.

Unger says early on, he never even thought of playing football, let alone becoming a champion.

“I only started playing football when I was a freshman in high school and I didn’t really know what was going on,” Unger said. “I didn’t play before that, didn’t really watch it, then I found out I had the body for it and I wasn’t bad at it and now, 10 years later, here we are.”

Tom Goodspeed, former HPA head football coach, flew in from California. “Max, you are amazing,” he said. “You’re a great ambassador for yourself, for HPA and for your family.”

After the ceremony, Unger hung out with the students, answering questions, signing autographs and taking photos.

“I’m very lucky,” he said.  “It’s easy to find something you’re passionate about. The hard part is putting in the hard work.”

Hawaii Island Mayor Billy Kenoi declared April 2, 2014 as “Max Unger Day” in the County of Hawaii.

Max Unger signs autographs for third-graders. (Photo: Hawaii Preparatory Academy)
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