Fort Worth Unveils “Cradle of Champions” Monument, Built by Gerdau Ameristeel, Honoring the Historic Legacy of Texas High School Football

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The Monument, Made of Recycled Steel from the Demolished Stadium in North Texas and High Schools Throughout the State, Features Names of Texas High School Football Players Who Have Successfully Reached ”The League”

With the eyes of the nation on North Texas for professional football’s championship game, there is no better time to honor and recognize our state’s very own football legends - Fort Worth Mayor Mike Moncrief

Fort Worth, Texas, today unveiled an inspiring 7-ton monument built by Gerdau Ameristeel, one of North America’s leading recyclers of steel, honoring the rich tradition of Texas high school football in Fort Worth’s legendary Sundance Square. The ceremony included appearances by Fort Worth Mayor Mike Moncrief, Dallas native and professional football legend Tim Brown, and David O’Brien, son of college football icon Davey O’Brien.

The “Cradle of Champions” monument, made entirely of repurposed steel, lists nearly 2,000 names of former Texas high school football players who have successfully reached “The League.” The monument, which illuminates Fort Worth’s dazzling downtown district, depicts the state of Texas along with football imagery to pay homage to the rich history of football in the Lone-Star State.

“We are honored that Gerdau Ameristeel chose our city to commemorate our state’s high school football legacy,” said Fort Worth Mayor Mike Moncrief. “With the eyes of the nation on North Texas for professional football’s championship game, there is no better time to honor and recognize our state’s very own football legends.”

Gerdau Ameristeel, the second-largest steel mini-mill company in North America, utilized steel from the demolished stadium in North Texas with steel scraps donated from high school football facilities across the state. Processed and reborn at the company’s steel mini-mill in Midlothian, Texas, the steel was melted and repurposed to create the astounding 16-feet high legacy structure weighing more than 7 tons. The monument will be showcased in the heart of Sundance Square leading up to Sunday’s championship game.

“This year’s campaign provides us with a unique opportunity to honor the past generations of Texas’ football heroes,” said Jim Kerkvliet, Gerdau Ameristeel vice president of sales and marketing. “We hope our structure embodies and commemorates the strength, passion and dedication illustrated within the deep tradition of Texas high school football.”

The “Cradle of Champions” monument was designed by Tampa-based Schifino Lee and fabricated by Fort Worth-based Thornton Steel. Following the conclusion of the championship game, the structure will stay in North Texas and stand as a tribute to the widespread talent of Texas’ young athletes.

Gerdau Ameristeel is the second largest mini-mill steel producer in North America, with annual manufacturing capacity of approximately 10 million metric tons of mill finished steel products. Through its vertically integrated network of mini-mills, scrap recycling facilities and downstream operations, Gerdau Ameristeel serves customers throughout the United States and Canada. The Company's products are generally sold to steel service centers, steel fabricators, or directly to original equipment manufacturers for use in a variety of industries, including non-residential, infrastructure, commercial, industrial and residential construction, metal building, manufacturing, automotive, mining, cellular and electrical transmission and equipment manufacturing. Gerdau Ameristeel is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Gerdau S.A., the leading producer of long steel in the Americas and one of the world’s largest suppliers of specialty long steel.


Philip K. Bell
Director, External Communications and Public Affairs
Gerdau Ameristeel
Tel. (813) 240-2589

Kimberly M. Selph
Manager, External Communications and Public Affairs
Gerdau Ameristeel
Tel. (813) 362-6394

Mike Iwamasa
Leader Enterprises

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