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Football & Family: An interview with Super Bowl champion Henry Hynoski

Henry Hynoski is a Super Bowl champion fullback who played for the New York Giants. Hynoski helped the New York Giants defeat the New England Patriots in the 2012 Super Bowl. He played in the NFL from 2011 until 2015, primarily as a blocking fullback. After an injury during the NFL Combine, Hynoski’s NFL hopes were in doubt. He went undrafted, but eventually signed with the New York Giants.

The Southern Columbia Area graduate grew up in an athletic family, and he describes football as being in his blood. His father, Henry Hynoski, Sr., played in the NFL with the Cleveland Browns and Philadelphia Eagles. Growing up, Henry was never pressured by his family to play sports. In his house, academics were always most important. Henry started playing football in the fifth grade after telling his parents, “I was born to play football.”

Hynoski went on to have a historic high school football career as a running back for Southern Columbia Area High School. He currently ranks 10th in all-time PIAA rushing yards (7,165) and sixth in all-time rushing touchdowns (113). During his time with the Tigers, the team won four straight PIAA state championships. Hynoski captured the attention of colleges across the country while in high school. He eventually committed to the University of Pittsburgh as a fullback.

The decision to commit to Pitt was based on their integrity and closeness to home. According to Hynoski, other schools promised 30 carries per game. However, both Pittsburgh and Hynoski knew his path and the school told him that he would make it to the NFL as a blocker. He says that going from high school to college is a bigger transition than that from college to the NFL. One of the biggest changes to Henry was transitioning from a small country school to a big city. Hynoski said he knew he was ready for the NFL after dominating in his first college game.

After his college career, Hynoski was headed towards the NFL. He was one of the top fullbacks in the nation heading into the NFL combine. Hynoski describes the combine as “the biggest job interview in your life.” During the combine, his NFL hopes seemed bleak after suffering a hamstring injury. Hynoski’s draft stock tanked and he went undrafted. However, many teams still showed interest after the draft. He signed with the New York Giants.

During his NFL career, Henry played for four seasons, all with the Giants. In those four seasons, Hynoski and the Giants earned the 2012 Super Bowl victory over Tom Brady and the New England Patriots. Hynoski recovered a fumble late in the third quarter to possibly save the game and had two receptions totaling 19 yards, both resulting in first downs. He talks about a famous Super Bowl rumor of Eli Manning telling running back Ahmad Bradshaw not to score at the goal line. “I didn’t hear it, I don’t remember it. I was just so engulfed in the moment and getting my assignment done, so if they did it’s between them.” Henry also points out how he won the Super Bowl in the same stadium he thought his career almost ended in at the combine.

After four seasons, injuries caught up with the “Hynoceros,” as he has been nicknamed. He was eventually cut by the Giants before the 2015 season. After his days in the NFL, Hynoski continued to work for the Giants. He then returned home to become the coach of the Shamokin Area Indians. Hynoski hopes to rebuild the school’s program into the powerhouse it once was. Henry also focuses on raising a family and being there for his wife and kids. In addition to his son, he and his wife recently welcomed a daughter into their family.

Listen to the full interview with Henry Hynoski here, which is posted with his permission: