Michael Vick may be the NFL's reigning Comeback Player of the Year, but his reputation has yet to make a complete comeback at his high school alma mater.
According to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, Hampton Roads Virginian-Pilot and other sources, Newport News Warwick (Va.) High is maintaining its stance that it will not restore the once disgraced quarterback's framed jersey to a prominent place in the school's hallway. The Warwick administration is holding fast to that decision, despite a growing student petition on Facebook calling for the school to restore the quarterback's framed No. 7.
"It is the final decision," Newport News Public Schools spokeswoman Michelle Price told the Virginian-Pilot. "The school administrators just decided that they are not going to take action on the students' request.
"At this point, they just want to remain focused on instruction and finishing up the school year strong."
Yet, the Warwick High administration also seems to be hedging its bets when it comes to the future of Vick's former high school football uniform. Price said that while the current principal was not willing to reconsider the decision, future administrators might reverse that decision, a policy reversal which could come as soon as next fall.
Regardless of when the issue is raised again, it's sure to spark just as much controversy as it has right now. After the Facebook page "Michael Vick High School Jersey Reframed" began gaining traction and national attention, a second page entitled "Michael Vick Petition To Not Rehang His Jersey in Warwick High School" was also set up.
As of Wednesday night, the pro-jersey hanging petition had roughly 750 Facebook "likes," while the petition to keep Vick's jersey in storage had nearly 1,250.
For his part, the student who started the original pro-Vick Facebook page insisted that restoring Vick's jersey to a place of prominence would set a good standard for how to make the most of second chances.
"I want to get Michael Vick's jersey re-framed back at school," Warwick High student Mario Lawrence told WAVY-TV. "It used to be up when I was a freshman and then they took it down.
"He's doing really good now. You know everyone makes mistakes. After he made mistakes, he just didn't stay down. He got up and just rebuilt his self. That's an inspiration for high school students."
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