#34 on his jersey, but a temporary tattoo of #22 on his forearm, in celebration of his niece, Paris Leonce signing her national letter of intent to play volleyball for Southern Illinois.
Griffith, who has always been a father figure to his niece, Paris Leonce, a senior at McEachern High School in Powder Springs, Georgia was not able to be with the family last week to celebrate, but felt she would get a kick out of his wearing her jersey number in the game.
Paris has always been the tomboy of his four nieces, and Griffith has supported her in every sport she’s played including her season as kicker on her high school football team. He always thought she’d play basketball in college as she’s played since 4th grade, however three years ago she started playing volleyball, and it is now her favorite sport.
Although Griffith, a San Diego State alum and native San Diegan wanted Paris at SDSU, after looking at her offers from several schools for basketball and volleyball, they both felt that SIU was the best fit.
“We are such a close knit family that I feel like it’s my own daughter going off to college. I am really proud of Paris and will continue to be one of her biggest fans.”
Griffith, who is in his 14th year in the NFL has always instilled in Paris that as an athlete you have to make sacrifices, play when you hurt, practice harder than the other guy and remember there is no “I” in team. He credits those simple guidelines to his success in the league.