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Bernard Pollard's #10 becomes first retired by South Side

September 12, 2020

 

Former South Side, Purdue and NFL star Bernard Pollard returned to South Side on Friday, September 11, to have his football #10 retired by the school.

Pollard was joined by his wife and children during the pregame ceremony at Jack Weicker Stadium. Pollard was presented a framed #10 South Side framed uniform by his former coach, Mark Bailey, and surprised by teammates he played with during his high school career. He also had a chance to speak with the current Archers football team before the game.

"This means everything," Pollard tells ParkviewSportsMedicine.com "South Side is who I am. When you say Bernard, there's no Bernard without South Side. There's no Bernard without my teammates, my supporters, the teachers, the administrators."

Pollard's number is the first to be retired by South Side, and Pollard says he was contacted by Archers athletic director Torrey Curry, who is making strong efforts to honor the school's proud sports history.

"His all-out style of play earned him many accolades as an Archer," Curry says. "His crushing hits and tackles earned him the nickname of “Bonecrusher” at Purdue, and that style of play continued throughout his illustrious NFL career."

Pollard graduated from South Side in 2003, and was a 1st team All-State selection at safety as senior and one of the top players in the Summit Athletic Conference in his day. Pollard played college football at Purdue, earning freshman All-America and 2nd team All-Big Ten Conference honors. In three seasons with the Boilermakers, he set a school record of 5 blocked punts.

‚ÄčPollard was a second-round NFL Draft pick by Kansas City in 2006. He played 9 professional seasons with the Chiefs, Houston Texans, Tennessee Titans and Baltimore Ravens, winning Super Bowl XLVII with the Ravens in 2012.

"I didn't play this game to have my jersey retired or to win a Super Bowl," Pollard beams. "I played this game because I loved it as a kid. I played this game because I loved to put fear into people."

In retirement, Pollard and his family have settled in Nashville, and started the Pollard's Helping Hands Foundation, which helps feed those in need. And he still keeps tabs on the SAC action and the next crop of future football stars coming out of the Summit City.

"You look at the Metro Youth Football system, you look at the middle school system, you look at the athletes, period, who come out of Fort Wayne. We get those guys who get there; who know what it takes to get out, to make a name for yourself, to go get those scholarships and to further their careers at the professional level," Pollard adds.

Pollard was also a standout athlete in basketball and track, as well; he was previously inducted into the South Side Athletics Hall of Fame.

South Side is one of 26 high schools that partners with Parkview Sports Medicine for athletic training, sports performance, nutrition, athletic rehab and other sports medicine services for Archer student-athletes. Learn more at www.parkviewsportsmedicine.com.

 

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