Shaq Visits Coach Bob Hurley at St. Anthony High School

At 8:20am the bell rang and another day of educating began at St. Anthony High School.

This, however, was no usual Tuesday for the Friar student body.

You could see the curiosity looming between periods as the students saw cameras in the auditorium but little did they know that they were in for a BIG surprise visit.

Coach Bob Hurley went to the front of the school where he greeted their surprise visitor, Shaquille O’Neal.

Shaq who grew up just miles away from the Jersey City school in neighboring Newark was visiting the school for the very first time.

Coach Hurley took Shaq on a tour of St. Anthony walking thru the trophy littered hallways.

However before you knew it the tour came to an end because there is just nothing left to see. St. Anthony only has twelve classrooms, an auditorium, cafeteria, and a storage closet converted into a weight room.

“I never knew it was this small. The way they talk about [Coach Hurley] and his son I thought they played in a 10,000 sq. foot gym.” Shaq continued, “This man has 200 championships and he has to rent a gym?”

While St. Anthony High School doesn’t have a gym on site, they have needs that go beyond basketball in order to continue to keep the bell ringing every morning at 8:20.

Shaq saw firsthand and it really hit home.

“I speak their language. We all come from the same place….When I come to see these kids, I think they know and understand that anything is possible. I will always try to give them the blueprint to success.”

Shaq spent an afternoon to meet with Coach Hurley and show his support for a school that is producing results. Yesterday afternoon is sure to be one these kids won’t soon forget.

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