By Paul Kurtz

AUDUBON, N.J. (CBS) – Residents of Audubon, NJ have temporarily adopted the Baltimore Ravens as their hometown team, thanks to the exploits of favorite son Joe Flacco.

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Audubon normally bleeds Eagles green, but not this week.  You can see “Flacco” signs and Ravens flags all over town. Trophy cases at Audubon High School are decorated with black and purple (top photo).

Ralph Schiavo (below) was the head football coach when Joe Flacco was a senior at Audubon.  He wasn’t surprised when the 6’6″ star was drafted in the first round. But to see him now on the threshold of a Super Bowl title, Schiavo says, that’s a little over the top.

(Ralph Schiavo, football coach at Audubon High School.  Credit: Paul Kurtz)

(Ralph Schiavo, football coach at Audubon High School. Credit: Paul Kurtz)


“When you hear his name and you see him on TV doing press conferences and hopefully you’re gonna see him raising the trophy, it’s pretty neat. Good luck, Joe,” Coach Schiavo tells KYW Newsradio.

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Sschool superintendent Don Borden (below) says students and faculty are bursting with pride over the success of their famous alumnus:

“Kids are wearing Flacco jerseys, Ravens gear. We’ve gone from green-and-gold to purple-and-black over the last two weeks. So, yeah, there is a buzz, certainly.”

(Audubon schools superintendent Don Borden.  Credit: Paul Kurtz)

(Audubon schools superintendent Don Borden. Credit: Paul Kurtz)

Borden says that as a student-athlete, Flacco, a three-sport star, was “the total package.”

“I think everybody looked at Joe as being a little different in the sense that you can’t teach the kind of size that he has.  His arm was always kind of legendary around here in his ability to sling a baseball or a football — and a really bright kid, a good student,” Borden recalls.

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And many fans will be heading to a local tavern for an all-day Super Bowl event.