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SAISD Athletic Hall of Fame


2024 SAISD Athletic Hall of Fame Honorees

San Antonio ISD will celebrate its 10th annual Athletic Hall of Fame on Saturday, August 10, 2024 at 3:30pm at the Alamo Convocation Center. Five honorees will be inducted into the prestigious class. Honorees include a retired professional basketball player, an NFL alum, a legendary pioneer in professional baseball, a WNBA difference maker, and a historic city championship football team. Tickets are on sale now for $50. 


Theresa Diane Acosta

Perhaps the greatest student-athletic trainer ever produced in San Antonio ISD, Theresa “Terri” Diane Acosta paved the way for those in her field. The 1994 graduate of Fox Tech High School took athletic training to the highest level by reaching the ranks of professional sports. It was at Fox Tech where she was first exposed to sports-related health care. Terri served four years as a student-athletic trainer for boys and girls sports. She was a multi-sport athlete, playing basketball, cross country and track for the Buffaloes. But she found her love as an athletic trainer. She received her bachelor and master degrees in Kinesiology at the University of North Texas. After college, she became an athletic trainer at multiple colleges, including Baruch College in New York. In 2019, she landed her dream job when she was named the head athletic trainer for the New York Liberty, a team in the Women’s National Basketball Association. She was the first Hispanic head athletic trainer in the WNBA. She worked with countless top athletes while also under the watchful eye of millions of viewers around the world. Terri served as the athletic trainer for the USA Basketball Women’s National Team at the 2024 Summer Olympics in Paris.

Wade Key 

A silent warrior on the football field, this 1964 Edison High School graduate reached the pinnacle of success by playing a decade in the National Football League. Wade Key was an SAISD product – attending Wilson Elementary School and Whittier Middle School before Edison. It was in middle school where he discovered the love for football. At six feet, four inches tall and 225 pounds, he was one of the top players on the varsity team where he earned All-District and All-City honors as a tight end. He played two seasons for the University of Texas at Austin before transferring to then Southwest Texas State University (now Texas State). For the Bobcats, he soared at tight end and helped the team reach the NAIA top ranking for multiple weeks in 1967. Key was drafted into the NFL by the Philadelphia Eagles in the 13th round in 1969. He was a mainstay for the Eagles, before retiring in 1980. In his first two seasons, he played offensive tackle and moved to offensive left guard the remainder of his career. He battled with the best, including NFL greats Bob Lilly and Randy “the Manster” White. Key played in 121 games. He was named to the Philadelphia Eagles 75th Anniversary Team in 2007.


Orlando Mendez-Valdez

Known as a coach on the basketball floor and a precision shooter, this 2004 graduate of Lanier High School rose to become a star athlete in his sport on an international stage. Raised in the projects on the West side of San Antonio at the Alazan Apache Courts, he used basketball as a vehicle to find success. He played four years on the varsity team, including his freshman season in 2001 where the Voks shocked many by rolling to the Class 4A state championship basketball game. At 6 feet, one inch tall, Mendez-Valdez was the team’s shooting guard and a feared field general on the court. He helped the Voks make the playoffs three times during his high school career. In his senior season, he averaged 23 points, eight rebounds and five assists per game. He made the All-State Team and was named Player of the Year in 2004 by the San Antonio Express-News. After high school, he played at Western Kentucky University. He was a shooting guard for the Hilltoppers and guided the team to reach the Sweet 16 during March Madness in 2008. He was an All-American in college. He played 15 years in the international professional circuit, primarily for the Mexican basketball teams.

John “Mule” Miles

Regarded as one of the greatest baseball players ever from San Antonio ISD, this 1940 alumnus of Wheatley High School was a pioneer in the sport. While in high school, he was a star in baseball and basketball. In 1942, he was selected as part of the nation’s first African American flying training program – the famed Tuskegee Airmen. He worked on planes flown by historic Black aviators in World War II. He returned to San Antonio and worked at Kelly Field. He was a mechanic and played baseball for the Kelly Air Force Base Bombers. During those years, Black players were prohibited from playing with whites in professional baseball. In 1946, a scout from the Negro League invited him to try out. He made the team as a third baseman and outfielder with the Chicago American Giants of the Negro Leaguefrom 1946-1949. He was nicknamed the "Mule" by his manager Candy Jim Taylor after hitting two home runs in one game. Taylor commented that Miles "hit like a mule kicks.” He was legendary for hitting 11 home runs in 11 straight games, a major league record. Miles played with baseball greats Jackie Robinson, Hank Aaron, Ernie Banks and Satchel Paige.

1979 Wheatley/Brackenridge High School Football Team

The 1979 Wheatley/Brackenridge Eagles were one of the greatest high school football teams SAISD has ever produced. The 1979 Eagles soared by winning the San Antonio City Championship in Class 4A, the state’s largest UIL classification at that time. No other SAISD football team has accomplished that feat since. The 47-member team, composed of 24 seniors, compiled a 9-3-1 overall record. The cinderella Eagles started the season 1-1-1 before turning it on and rolling to a district title. In the playoffs, the team upset Lee High School 16-14 to win the bi-district championship. The Eagles stunned John Jay High School in a thriller 21-20 to win the region crown. In the third round quarterfinal game, the Eagles hosted Alice in front of 15,000 plus fans at Alamo Stadium where the two best teams in South Texas went head-to-head. In the end, the Eagles bowed to Alice 29-20. The 1979 Eagles produced five All-City first-team players, a district record that still stands. All-City players included Kenny Roberts (offensive tackle), Marty Martinez (defensive tackle), Sidney Graham (defensive back), Eddie Martinez (linebacker) and Tom Collins (offensive guard). Head coach was Joe Rendon. Top assistant coaches included Charlie Pena (offensive coordinator) and Cecil Lara (defensive coordinator). “SAISD had been knocking at the door,” Coach Pena said. “But couldn’t break the lock that North East and Northside had. (In 1979) we busted both locks.”

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