If you were trying to make the yearbook for the Class of 2006 for Highland Park High School in Texas, you somehow had two correct answers to the question, “Who’s most likely to become the highest-paid athlete in their respective sport?”
Two of the students who graduated that year happen to be Matthew Stafford and Clayton Kershaw.
Indeed, the current highest-paid players in the NFL and MLB, respectively, were classmates in the same Texas town before going on to sporting greatness. In case you were looking for visual proof of this fun fact:
These two kids would go on to become the highest paid athletes in NFL and MLB pic.twitter.com/DcShtOAYZF— Sung Min Kim (@sung_minkim) August 29, 2017
Stafford just signed a five-year, $135 million contract with the Detroit Lions that makes him the highest-paid player in NFL history. The deal, which includes a $50 million signing bonus, surpasses the $125 million deal that Derek Carr signed with the Oakland Raiders earlier this offseason.
Kershaw makes more than both of those football players on the seven-year, $215 million contract he signed with the Los Angeles Dodgers in 2014. He’s due to make $35.5 million for the 2017 season — the highest salary in MLB — as part of a deal that’s worth $30.7 million annually over its life.
Both players came out of Highland Park with a ton of hype. Stafford was a star quarterback at the University of Georgia before being selected No. 1 overall in the 2009 NFL Draft. Kershaw was drafted straight out of high school by the Dodgers with the No. 7 pick in the 2006 MLB Draft and immediately became one of baseball’s elite prospects.
You may have your opinions about whether these two are worth their respective deals, but it’s fair to say they’ve done pretty dang well for themselves. I bet the 15-year reunion will be a blast.