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Valley Stream Standout Earns Prestigious HS Football Honor

Valley Stream High School.
Valley Stream High School. Photo Credit: File

A Long Island high school football standout has earned a prestigious award for his work on the field and in the classroom.

Joe Munson, who plays both ways as an offensive lineman and linebacker in Valley Stream, was named as one of 81 members of the National Football Foundation (NFF) and College Hall of Fame’s inaugural “Team of Distinction.”

Criteria to make the team included academic achievement, athletic accolades and community involvement. Each chapter of the NFF is limited to one honoree, “distinguishing them as the top scholar-athlete from all the high schools covered by the chapter.”

Munson - who was named the winner of the Jay Fielder Award in December, which is presented to the top scholar-athlete in Nassau County - was chosen for his 100.6 weighted average grade. He was also his team’s captain, an AP Scholar and member of the National Honor Society.

In total, 81 high school seniors were honored in 35 states. The team averages a 4.0 GPA, and 71 of the honorees was a team captain. Of those chosen, there were 15 valedictorians, 60 National Honor Society members, and 32 all-State selections.

NFF Chairman and NFL Hall of Famer Archie manning said that “this initiative allows us to shine a national spotlight on some of the most deserving high school student-athletes honored at the local level by our expansive Chapter Network.”

"This honor is one of the most prestigious national awards that a high school player can receive, and it really brings into focus the phenomenal work that our chapters do in identifying the most outstanding young leaders in their communities. We would like to congratulate all 81 honorees, holding them out as examples for future generations to emulate."

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