Stephen A. Smith hilariously surprises West Philly graduation Zoom

Adam Hermann
NBC Sports Philadelphia

Even in the most uncertain and trying times, former Philadelphia sportswriter-turned-TV personality Stephen A. Smith remains perfectly Stephen A.

Smith, the enigmatic talking head who spent the better part of two decades writing in Philly, is known best for his high-energy exclamations on ESPN's First Take.

Turns out, Smith will bring that same energy anywhere, including an online West Philly high school graduation ceremony.

That's exactly what happened this week, per WHYY education report Avi Wolfman-Arent, when Smith made a surprise appearance on Paul Robeson High School's graduation Zoom call.

Here's how Stephen A. (virtually) kicked in the door:

I can't imagine anything more confusing (and amazing? and maybe slightly terrifying?) than being jolted to attention by Stephen A. virtually bounding into your Zoom.

His entrance is reminiscent of this iconic Stephen A. clip:

It's so great that Smith brought the same energy to his speech.

And then Smith delivered a positive and encouraging message to the students:

Didn't know someone was gonna sneak up on you for your graduation, did you? Did you? Well guess what: somebody who loves you very, very dearly happens to be a personal friend of mine. Y'all call her Kimmy. 

My point is, I'm here, just to wish y'all luck in your future endeavors, and congratulate y'all on your graduation. Very, very proud of y'all. Y'all put in the work, y'all made the necessary sacrifices, y'all did what you needed to do. And now college is in front of your face, and your future is looking bright as ever. 

I know this coronavirus pandemic has stalled a lot of things, and it's messed a lot of things up for a lot of people. Our heart goes out to those who've been suffering and what have you, we wish nothing but the best for everybody, because we're human beings first. So our love for one another definitely needs to resonate. 

But I wanted to take a moment to say to y'all, congratulations, and I'm proud of y'all. Where I'm standing today, in terms of the success that I've been able to achieve, I hope for each and every one of you that you achieve even better than me. Remember: the people that came before you weren't there to be better than you, they were there to provide shoulders that you can stand on, to stand taller than we could ever hope to. That's the potential that you have. Recognize that, remember that, and go for it. All the best to you.

Good stuff.

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Stephen A. Smith hilariously surprises West Philly graduation Zoom originally appeared on NBC Sports Philadelphia

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