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Former school honours Jericho
By EZRA GINSBURG - Winnipeg Sun




Winnipeg's Chris Jericho was honoured with an award yesterday at Red River College's Princess Street campus hours before he was set to enter the squared circle in a bid to reclaim professional wrestling's top prize.

"This is just really cool, because it means that I'm now smarter than all of you," he joked to the crowd.

Jericho was presented with the 2008 Distinguished Alumni award by RRC president Jeff Zabudsky in a room packed with students and reporters.

"We're delighted to present you with this award and honoured that you could make it here. It's terrific to have you back," said Zabudsky.

Jericho was in town for last night's World Wrestling Entertainment Raw live event at MTS Centre, where he was attempting to win the WWE Heavyweight Championship belt back from John Cena. Jericho lost the title to Cena in late November.

Jericho was named a recipient of the alumni award at RRC's June convocation but he was on the road and unable to attend.

He graduated from RRC in 1990 at the age of 19 with a Creative Communications diploma majoring in journalism, something he credits with helping him develop his famous in-ring persona.

"I already (received an honour) from Premier Gary Doer but this is like getting a Nobel Prize," said Jericho. "Seriously though, this is an honour because I don't know if I would have made it as far as I have without Cre Comm."

Jericho, whose real name is Chris Irvine, is the son of former NHL forward and sports broadcaster Ted Irvine, who was on hand yesterday.

He has no shortage of hardware in his trophy case, as he is the only wrestler in WWE history to have held all six different championship titles at one time or another. Jericho returned from wrestling in 2007 after taking two years off to concentrate on his metal band Fozzy and to pen his novel, A Lion's Tale: Around the World in Spandex. The book debuted at #22 on The New York Times best-seller list.

He has been busy with a wide range of projects, including briefly hosting a heavy metal music show on XM Satellite Radio and appearing on VH1's Best Week Ever.

Jericho has also amassed material for a second book, due to be completed by this September. He said the new book will deal with his WWE debut and a verbal war with former WWE superstar The Rock to his time off from the ring three years ago, in which he toured with Fozzy and pursued his acting career.

"This book is going to be better than the last one and will reach new levels of ridiculosity," said Jericho.

RELATED LINKS

  • Chris Jericho bio and story archive