Tag Archives: Athletics

JGHS Welcomes New Head Football Coach

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

Updated 3/27/23 @ 3:56pm


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.

Student Athletes Are Practicing–Is it a Good Idea?

By Andrea Arias

On November 9, 2020, John Glenn High School volleyball returned to campus to start conditioning. Volleyball was one of the four sports set to return in November to hopefully have a season starting in December. These included football, volleyball, cross country, and cheerleading.

The school put in strict restrictions on athletic activity, such as maintaining 6-foot distance, temperature checks, grouping to contact trace anyone that gets sick, no carpooling, etc.

While these are adequate rules to hopefully prevent someone from getting sick, it does not assure anyone that they won’t get sick or even that students won’t go out with friends or family on the weekends. Also there are a bunch of teenage girls and guys working out together. How are 3 coaches going to be able to maintain that each student keeps their distance and keeps their mask on?

While many girls have signed to be able to return to these practices, so many more have decided not to go, which means that they do not agree with the school’s decision. I am one of these students. While at first I wanted to return to see my friends and escape my home, I could not bring myself to put my family and friends at risk. Having had my mom already get sick with COVID-19, how could I put them at risk as well as my teammates?

There just seems no way that this was actually going to work.

While I do understand why schools want to start athletics, do they understand the risk that they are putting their students in just by asking them to go back onto campus? The reasons people have been getting sick with COVID-19 is by simply coming into contact with someone who is sick, and the risk of this is that some people are asymptomatic (don’t show any symptoms of Covid), which is why COVID-19 is such a dangerous disease.

Aside from this decision about sports, the Norwalk-La Mirada Unified School District has still not yet decided if students will have to return to campus for the second semester. From what I’ve gathered, many students and families are worried about returning. Maybe, just like gathering for athletics, it is not going to work right now.