Jio Fontan is not simply a recent transfer to USC, he’s also a star on the big screen.
Fontan led Fordham as a freshman with an average 15.3 points per game and being named the Atlantic 10 Conference men’s basketball rookie of the year but was frustrated with the Rams’ 3-25 season. Fontan will be eligible to play for the Trojans after the first semester of the 2010-2011 season.
The documentary, produced by TeamWorks Media, features Fontan alongside his 2007-2008 teammates from St. Anthony High School. Screened in November of 2009 at Rutgers University during the New Jersey Film Festival, the film recounts St. Anthony High School Coach Bob Hurley Sr. and his team’s journey to its 25th state championship season, a national record.
Fontan was a three-year varsity player under Hurley and helped lead the Friars to a perfect 32-0 season as a senior. The Friars held the number one national ranking in both the USA Today 25 and the ESPN High Elite 25 polls. However, the documentary’s main focus is not solely on Hurley and the St. Anthony High School basketball team accomplishments.
St. Anthony High School in Jersey City, New Jersey, a poor, inner-city neighborhood, has struggled to remain open because of a lack of funding. The film examines the players’ lives and how they react to hardships with the help of Hurley.
“This documentary is a great way to make everyone around the country aware of the mission of St. Anthony,” Hurley told the website PeterRobertCasey.com. “The kids here need this school. They need a place that keeps them off the street, but every year it’s a struggle just to keep our doors open.”
The documentary includes interviews from acclaimed basketball coaches who praise Hurley and his program.
“A lot of the kids playing basketball are trying to survive, they’re trying to figure out how they can turn their dreams into reality. That’s what Bob Hurley does, and that’s what St. Anthony’s does,” said Duke coach Mike Krzyzewski in the film’s trailer.
The Street Stops Here is set to premiere on PBS on Wednesday, March 31 at 10pm.