Angus-born American football star Graham Gano has kicked his way into the Super Bowl Final where he’ll fly the Saltire.
Gano scored two field goals as the Carolina Panthers dismantled Arizona Cardinals 49-15 in the NFC Championship game on Sunday evening.
The kicker opened the scoring and played a big role in the resounding victory, recording touchbacks on seven of his nine kick-offs.
The Panthers will now face the Denver Broncos in San Francisco in two weeks’ time in only their second Super Bowl.
Gano will fly his beloved Saltire at the Super Bowl as it’s traditional for “foreign” NFL stars to carry the flag of their home country as the US national anthem is sung before the game.
He said: “I’m proud of both my Scottish and American roots and most of my team-mates know where I’m from but not what the Scottish flag looks like, so I’ll get a few questions.
“Millions of people will see the Scottish flag.”
Although virtually unknown in his home town of Arbroath, Gano whose US Navy father Mark was based at RAF Edzell when his son was born in Arbroath in April 1987 is a multi-million-dollar NFL hero.
The Red Lichtie has already said he will return home to Arbroath with his family if he wins the Super Bowl ring on February 7.
Arbroath councillor David Fairweather said: “I didn’t know the talents of people from Arbroath could stretch that far.
“If he wins the Super Bowl I will be putting forward a motion to the council because he deserves all the recognition that Arbroath and Angus can give him.”
Angus Provost Helen Oswald has said he would certainly get a letter of congratulations if he was to win the NFL’s biggest prize.
Gano started out playing football as his father’s military career took the family from Courier Country to Germany, Canada and Florida.
He took up American Football in high school and went through Florida State University, playing as a kicker and punter for the Florida State Seminoles.
During his senior year in 2008, Gano finished first for field goals made, percentage of field goals converted and 50-yard field goals made, and was the Lou Groza Award winner as the nation’s top kicker.
He signed for the Baltimore Ravens in 2009 as an undrafted free agent and has also played for the Las Vegas Locomotives and the Washington Redskins.
On February 28 2014, it was announced Gano had signed a new four-year contract with the Carolina Panthers worth $12.4 million.
His parents met in Scotland and his sister Elaine still lives there.
He will become only the second Scot to win if he goes all the way kicker Lawrence Tynes won Super Bowl rings with the New York Giants in 2008 and 2012.