Isidore Newman students cheer on Peyton Manning

NEW ORLEANS, LA (WVUE) - Peyton Manning's old high school in Uptown New Orleans cheer him on in a big way.

More than a thousand Isodore Newman students gathered for a pep rally with spirit that almost blew the roof off the gym.

Manning started at Newman as a kindergartener in 1981 and graduated in 1994 as the schools star quarterback.

He's been number 18 since.

Nelson Stewart played with Peyton on the team in 1994 as a defensive lineman. Now he's the head football coach.

"I really hope all of you know by cheering for the Borncos you're cheering for Newman and in my mind you're cheering for the greatest quarterback in the National Football League," said Stewart.

Stewart says 11 of Peyton Manning's high school friends are heading to the Super Bowl to see their classmate play in the big game.

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