A boy growing up playing football in high school 27 miles from Citrus College has quickly matured into the leader of the Fighting Owls football team.
Bernard Porter Jr., 18, graduated in 2012 from Summit High School in Fontana where he was named the CIF Championship Game Most Valuable Player, earned CIF Most Valuable Player honors in the post-season, was named a 1st team All-Sunkist League honoree as a junior and senior, and won the CIF Eastern Division Championship.
Today, Porter is a full-time student and full-time athlete juggling school, workouts, practice, studying, homework, games, and family.
Standing at 6 feet 2 inches tall and weighing in at 190 pounds, he is the ideal image of a new era of modern quarterbacks who are a deadly combination of both the passing game and rushing.
“When I was little, I used to watch football, and my favorite quarterback was Brett Favre,” Porter said. “My favorite team was the Green Bay Packers, so I wanted to follow in his footsteps. Being a quarterback, you’re the leader of the team. You have a lot of responsibility, and I kinda like that. It gives me more drive and energy to go on to do what I do.”
Assistant head football coach and offensive coordinator Ben Noonan sees his style of game like Robert Griffin III, also known as RGIII. But in Porter’s case, he is more like BPII. Noonan actually helped recruit RGIII at Baylor, before Noonan left the program.
“He’s the first athletic quarterback we’ve had here in forever,” said coach Ron Ponciano.
When Porter wants to relax, he likes to take pictures. One of his favorite locations is Venice Beach, where he takes pictures of the graffiti, nature, or the sea. “It keeps me calm and helps me relax,” he said.
Porter has his mind set primarily on his education, and then comes football. His coaches are always there encouraging him to hit the books and get good grades.
“It’s hard sometimes, long times at practice, I like to call it work, but school comes first. I always got to make time for school, then its practice and then its football. But school comes first.”
Porter is majoring in kinesiology and plans to transfer to UCLA. He hopes to make a career out of coaching or sports training.
“I’m a big family guy,” says Porter, who also finds it comforting being with his two brothers, sister, mother and father.
Porter says that his mom is his biggest fan and he always cracks a smile when he sees her in the stands.
“He’s a phenomenal kid. He’s a nice guy, he’s well spoken, and he always looks you in the eye when he talks to you,” said Noonan.
The football team finished the season with an overall record of 7-4 and a conference record of 3-3.
The team also went to the Western State Bowl where Porter was named the game’s Offensive MVP.
Porter was also listed on the Southern California Football Alliance National Division Central Conference All-Conference list, where he received 2nd-team honors. In his first year, Porter completed 61.8 percent of his passes for 2,343 yards and 23 TDs, both of which are single season program records.