Jason “J-Mac” McElwain will have his hoops jersey retired
Greece Athena high school in Rochester, New York, will have one final time to relive the magical night that autistic student-athlete Jason “J-Mac” McElwain, put on for them seven years prior. We all remember the feel good moment that instantly became a national story when coach Jim Johnson sent McElwain, the team manager, into the Senior Night game with around 4 minutes left in regulation.
What happened next nobody could have predicted. McElwain dropped 20 points while posting a school record, six three-pointers in what was his first and last varsity appearance. As the final buzzer sounded, the crowd rushed in unison and carried J-Mac off the court setting the stage for his national celebrity.
Then came the television interviews, commercials and appearances. McElwain would go on to win ESPN’s 2006 ESPY Award for Best Sports Moment. Walt Disney and Warner Bros. even contacted him about a potential movie. J-Mac also got to meet Kobe Bryant, Reggie Bush, Oprah Winfrey and former President, George W. Bush. That’s not all however as Peyton Manning visited McElwain and invited him and a friend to Indianapolis Colts training camp for a week.
After the huge media storm that ensued, Jason practically became a celebrity. Now seven years later, Jason still assists the program but as an alumni. This coming hoops season, coach Jim Johnson and the Greece Athena high school will retire the No. 52 Greece Athena jersey.
The only other jersey to be retired from Greece Athena is former Syracuse and NBA player John Wallace. J-Mac is in good company.