Lone Star Gridiron

“Cradle of Champions” Monument Honors Legacy of Texas High School Football

A 7-ton monument honoring the rich tradition of Texas high school football was unveiled in Fort Worth’s legendary Sundance Square.  The ceremony included appearances by Fort Worth Mayor Mike Moncrief, Dallas native and professional football legend Tim Brown, and David O’Brien, son of college football icon Davey O’Brien.

The “Cradle of Champions” monument, made entirely of repurposed steel, lists nearly 2,000 names of former Texas high school football players who have successfully reached “The League.” The monument utilized steel from the demolished stadium in North Texas with steel scraps donated from high school football facilities across the state.  Processed and reborn at the company’s steel mini-mill in Midlothian, Texas, the steel was used to create the 16-feet high structure weighing more than 7 tons.  The monument will be showcased in the heart of Sundance Square leading up to Sunday’s championship game.

“This year’s campaign provides us with a unique opportunity to honor the past generations of Texas’ football heroes,” said Jim Kerkvliet, Gerdau Ameristeel vice president of sales and marketing. “We hope our structure embodies and commemorates the strength, passion and dedication illustrated within the deep tradition of Texas high school football.”

The “Cradle of Champions” monument was designed by Tampa-based Schifino Lee and fabricated by Fort Worth-based Thornton Steel.  Following the conclusion of the championship game, the structure will stay in North Texas and stand as a tribute to the widespread talent of Texas’ young athletes.

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