JGHS Welcomes New Head Football Coach

Interview & Photos by Stany Hernandez | Press Release courtesy Dr. Padilla

Updated 3/27/23 @ 3:56pm

Eagles,

It’s official. Please join us in welcoming our new Eagles Varsity Head Football Coach, Elijhaa Penny!

As a graduate of NLMUSD, Penny has returned from his college and NFL career to Norwalk to give back to the community that he is passionate about. We are thrilled to welcome him into the Eagle family and look forward to the skill, experience, and energy that he will bring to our program!

The school welcomed him officially at lunch on Friday 3/24/23 in the quad. Students, teachers, and media were on hand to stop by and say, “Welcome!”

During the March 24 interview in the Quad, Coach Penny described his position here as preparing players to be higher-level athletes and to excel outside of high school. He reported having connections with NFL coaches and college coaches to help students he deems with potential to play at a university or have the commitment for it.

If there are any of our dear readers teetering the edge of playing football or not, Coach Penny says, “You can’t do that with football. It’s almost like a position where you have to be 100% committed. If you have a burning desire, just come out and try it. Other than that, I feel like football is one of those sports where you’re either 100% committed or you’re out.”

His goals for the season include winning the coveted Mayor’s Cup, stating, “I wanna win the Mayor’s Cup trophy, so we’re definitely going for that.” He continues to reflect on the community saying, “It’s definitely good for the city. Our kids are considered to be low-level talented kids but I want to make the best out of the city–whether that’s Norwalk or John Glenn, I don’t look at it any different (when it comes to the community).”

For our football players next fall, be ready to work for Coach Penny! Go Eagles!

ed. note: Coach Penny attended the University of Idaho, and then signed as an undrafted free agent with the Arizona Cardinals, for whom he played from 2016-2018; he then played, most notably, for the New York Giants for four seasons from 2018-2021. The fullback retired from the NFL on November 28, 2022.