It was a great a great day for Bennett High School athletics.
At a ceremony in which the school celebrated 10 student-athletes who either received athletic or partial academic scholarships to attend college or prep schools following graduation, two school officials said that all athletic teams at the school will be known again as Bennett effective during the 2017-18 scholastic year.
Buffalo Public Schools Athletic Director Aubrey Lloyd and district official David Mauricio informed The Buffalo News of the development Wednesday.
"The superintendent made a decision to continue the name and the legacy of the program with the establishment of the state of the art computer and science program that will be the future of Bennett High School," said Mauricio, the chief of strategic alignment & innovation, following a ceremony in which the school celebrated student-athletes who will receive scholarship money to continue their education after high school.
During the fall, Lloyd said the Bennett name would go away after football season due to a since-abandoned phase-out plan by the district. The rest of the senior class' student-athletes competed on teams with Middle Early College, also housed within the vast Bennett building. Instead, officials along with Bennett alumni came up with a plan to reboot the school with a computer and technology program prior to the current school year. The district admitted a freshman class at Bennett for the first time in three years.
Some day they too will earn the opportunity to add to the athletic legacy of school, whose greats include Greater Buffalo Sports Hall of Famers Bob Lanier, Curtis Aiken, former Canadian Football League player Don Gilbert and former football standout and Rich Products founder Robert E. Rich Sr.
The same with football, which now has a chance to build on a season in which it captured its first Section VI championship when it defeated Starpoint for the Class A crown last November at New Era Field.