Prospect High (California) JV Head Coach Rob Mendez honored at ESPYS with the Jimmy V Award for Perseverance.

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Having a bad day? Watch Prospect High School (Saratoga, California) Junior Varsity head coach Rob Mendez’s speech from Wednesday night when he accepted the Jimmy V Award for Perseverance at the ESPYs in Los Angeles.

For those of you not familiar with Mendez’s story, he was born without limbs due to a rare disorder called tetra-amelia syndrome. He loved the game of football and learned the game’s fundamentals while playing the Madden video game.

As a freshman in high school, Mendez became a manager for his high school football team. Working hard, as a senior he became the team’s quarterbacks coach.

That started his dream of going further in the profession. He spent 12 years serving as an assistant coach with several local high school programs. Then his big break came last year when Prospect head coach Mike Cable named Mendez as his Junior Varsity head coach at Prospect.

How’d Mendez do in his first year? The team went 8–2.

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Jeff Fisher
Jeff is an award-winning journalist and expert in the field of high school sports, underscored with his appearance on CNBC in 2010 to talk about the big business of high school football in America. Jeff turned to his passion for high school football into an entrepreneurial venture called High School Football America, a digital media company focused on producing original high school sports content for radio, television and the internet. Jeff is co-founder and editor-in-chief of High School Football America, which is a media partner with USA TODAY High School Sports.