Film documents football season when Kennedy was king
on November 28, 2009
Jeff Patterson was in Hawaii when he found out that his alma mater, Kennedy High, beat El Cerrito in the 1984 North Coast Section championship football game.
Patterson graduated the year before and was in the army. He said he was a broadcaster in high school and didn’t play on the team. Still, the win meant a lot.
“During my four years at Kennedy we never beat El Cerrito,” he said.
“It was exciting for me to find out they beat them in the Coliseum for the championship,” he added. “It was special for a lot of former Eagles.”
In celebration of the 25th anniversary of that game, MK Productions shows “El Cerrito-Kennedy: The Game That Changed the NCS” on Saturday, Nov. 28 at 7 p.m. at the Richmond Memorial Convention Center. There is a reception that starts at 6 p.m. Tickets are $10. Patterson and D’Andre Wells, the Kennedy quarterback that year, produce the film. The film will also be broadcast on a Web site Patterson and Wells are planning to launch next week, Bay Area Sports Channel.
The film chronicles the 18-16 win for the Eagles, a team that year that featured future NFL receivers Terry Obee and Rod Moore, as well as Wells, who went on to Cal.
The game wasn’t just a big win for the underdog Eagles, who finished second to El Cerrito in the Richmond-Berkeley Athletic League. The game changed the way the NCS did its playoff seedings, Patterson said. The Eagles win, after they were given a low seed and little chance to advance, caused NCS coaches to value at-large teams more when voting at the seeding meeting.
“It opened the door to more teams that were not league champions,” Patterson said.
This is the first documentary Patterson and Wells, area prep sports broadcasters for a decade, have produced. They have an archive of high school football video from the past 10 years for the Bay Area Sports Channel, they said.
Patterson said it was important that the documentary about the 1984 game air this year, after Kennedy had trouble fielding a varsity team this year and ended up cancelling the season.
“It’s a message of hope to the kids and the community,” he said. “This was once a very great situation for football. We want to let them know that it happened. It did happen.”
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