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Hometown Victory: A Coach's Story of Football, Fate, and Coming Home

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The Blindside meets Friday Night Lights in Keanon Lowe's Hometown Victory when an NFL coach returns home after losing a friend to coach a team of struggling high school kids on a 23-game losing streak.

Keanon Lowe was working as an offensive analyst for the San Francisco 49ers when his childhood friend and former high school teammate suddenly died from an opioid overdose. Keanon dropped everything--including the plum NFL job he had been working towards since childhood--leading him to a position as football coach at a struggling high school back in his hometown. At the time, Parkrose High School was in the middle of a 23-game losing streak--they were the ultimate underdogs.

In many ways, the road to Parkrose was paved by Keanon's life-defining experiences--from a childhood spent dodging racist bullies and finding the support and mentorship he craved on the football team, to an NFL season where he worked closely with Colin Kaepernick as he evolved his sideline protest. Keanon was drawn to the young men on the Parkrose team, and to the school itself. After two years, he pushed them to become conference champions, mentoring countless players along the way.

But still, there was that nagging sense that his calling wasn't meant to stop there. He was at that school for a reason. In May 2019, he got his answer when a 19-year-old student entered a Parkrose classroom with a trench coat and shotgun. Keanon disarmed him and pulled the boy into a hug, telling him he cared. In the boy, Keanon saw himself, and the young men he grew up with or mentored along the way--and weren't so many of them just looking for acceptance, for comfort, for love?

With the heart of favorite football classics--The Blindside, Friday Night Lights, Remember the Titans--Keanon's journey at Parkrose is the true account of a life spent striving forward, even when faced with the unimaginable. Hometown Victory is a story about gratitude, service, and most of all, hope.

ISBN-13: 9781250807632

Media Type: Hardcover

Publisher: Flatiron Books

Publication Date: 05-10-2022

Pages: 240

Product Dimensions: 8.59h x 5.75w x 0.88d

Keanon Lowe is football coach and former D1 football player for the Oregon Ducks. He gained widespread media attention in May of 2019 after disarming an active school shooter and embracing him until the police arrived. On November 23, 2019, ESPN's "College GameDay" aired the story of Lowe's path to Parkrose, his impact on and off the field in the community, and that day he helped prevent a tragedy. After playing as a wide receiver for half a decade, Lowe went to work in Philadelphia as an analyst for the Philadelphia Eagles and then an offensive analyst for the San Francisco 49ers. Keanon spent a little over a year at Jesuit High School Portland working as assistant football coach before moving to Parkrose High School, where he became the head coach for both football and track and field. At that time, Parkrose was on a 23-game losing streak. Lowe chose the school because he wanted to lift up the underdogs. Within two years of coaching, Lowe pushed the team to become conference champions. They also took home their first playoff victory ever.

Justin Spizman is an award-winning and bestselling author, ghostwriter, and editor. He has worked on We Rise with Xiuhtezcatl Martinez, Taking Your Team to the Top with Ted Sundquist, and is the coauthor of Don't Give Up . . . Don't Ever Give Up: The Inspiration of Jimmy V. Justin currently lives in Atlanta, Georgia, with his wife, Jaime, their two beautiful daughters Dani and Bella, and their rambunctious dog, Bodhi.