RASHARD MENDENHALL’S NUMBER “5” TO BE RETIRED
Niles West Alum, University of Illinois Football Hall of Famer, & Super Bowl Champion to Be Honored on Friday, September 22, 2023
For more information:
April Stallworth, D219 Executive Director of Communications & Partnerships
Phone: (847) 626-3958
Email: [email protected]
District Website: https://www.niles-hs.k12.il.us/
Skokie, IL – Rashard Mendenhall, returns to his roots at Niles West High School for a special ceremony in his honor where he will be recognized for his high school, college, and professional football accomplishments. Mendenhall will also have his Number “5” Niles West Jersey retired, the first one in the football program’s history. This ceremony will take place one week after he will be entered into the University of Illinois – Illini Hall of Fame Class of 2023.
It was at Niles West that Mendenhall started his career as a football, basketball, and track athlete. Rashard excelled on the football field as a running back averaging 9.1 yards per carry, rushing for 1,453 yards on 160 attempts and 14 touchdowns during his senior year. He went on to attend the University of Illinois and was named the 2007 Big Ten Offensive Player of the Year. In 2008, the Pittsburgh Steelers drafted Rashard as a first-round pick. During his rookie season, he led his team to a Superbowl victory against the Arizona Cardinals. He also played for the Steelers in the 2010 Super Bowl vs. the Green Bay Packers. Rashard retired from football while on the Arizona Cardinals team. Upon his retirement from the NFL, Rashard became a writer and story editor for the HBO sports comedy, Ballers. In 2015, he was inducted into the Niles West Athletic Hall of Fame.
“The Niles West Athletic Department is proud to welcome home our decorated alum, Rashard Mendenhall! Throughout his time at West, Rashard was a tremendous multi-sport student-athlete and member of our school community. He continues to astound us with each and every new accomplishment he has achieved since his graduation from Niles West. Rashard’s hard work on and off the field continues to make his Niles West Family proud. We cannot wait to honor and celebrate him as he is truly an inspiration to us all”, said Dr. Dana Krilich, Niles West Athletic Director.
The afternoon ceremony will be held on Friday, September 22nd, 2023, 2:20 pm CT, at the Niles West High School Gymnasium, 5701 W Oakton Street, Skokie, IL. The event will be attended by district staff, students, administration, Mendenhall’s family members, and previous coaches. Due to it occurring during school time, this event is by invitation only.
Rashard will also be recognized at the Varsity Football game that evening vs. Niles North. Varsity kick-off is at 7:30 PM and the game is open to the public. Admission will be charged.
Members of the press who plan to attend should contact April Stallworth, D219 Executive Director of Communications & Partnerships, at [email protected] or 847-626-3958.