The Huntsville Item, Huntsville, TX

Local News

March 2, 2008

Students urged to score in life with education, good choices

Michael Bishop was a Heisman Trophy finalist and a backup quarterback for the New England Patriots and Green Bay Packers, where he spent countless hours talking to superstars Tom Brady and Brett Favre.

He won six championships at the collegiate and professional football levels.

But this Willis native didn’t make it happen without making good choices.

“If I hadn’t got my education and stayed out of trouble, I wouldn’t have got an opportunity to play professional football,” Bishop told students Friday during the finale of weekly Black History Month lectures at the Huntsville Transitional Discipline Academy.

He told the students that their behavior will follow them wherever they go.

“Now is a good time to make changes and head for the right path,” he said. “When Kansas State was looking at signing me, the coach brought up something that happened in the seventh grade. You can’t keep focusing on what happened in your past. You just have to do what it takes to make yourself better now.”

Bishop was an All-American in baseball and football and was drafted by the Cleveland Indians in 1995.

He opted to attend Blinn Junior College for two seasons and helped the Buccaneers post back-to-back undefeated national championships.

“My first struggle in college was seeing guys that were stronger and faster than I was,” he said. “It’s kind of intimidating to be in a locker room and being the smallest one in there.”

After graduating from the two-year school, Bishop was sought by several Division I programs as a wide-receiver, but his passion was to play quarterback.

Kansas State coach Bill Snyder brought him in to Manhattan, Kan. and Bishop led the Wildcats to an 11-1 season including a win over Donovan McNabb’s Syracuse team in the Fiesta Bowl.

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