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Basketball Teams Speak

Courtesy: NC A&T Sports Information
          Release: 05/01/2013
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A&T men's basketball player Bruce Beckford and teammates sign autographs at Allen Middle School. Photo by Kevin L. Dorsey
Courtesy: NC A&T Sports Information
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North Carolina A&T Athletics believes our student-athletes should strive to be leaders in the community because it fosters goodwill in the areas surrounding North Carolina A&T. It also offers our student-athletes educational opportunities outside of the classroom environment, makes the environment in which they live better and provides an opportunity for student-athletes to invest and stand as role models for the community's youth. 
The Aggies recently were involved in an important community effort -- Allen Middle School Outreach.    
By Charles McArthur-Johnson
special correspondent to

The North Carolina A&T Athletics performed community outreach on April 24 when a group of 12 student-athletes made up of the men’s and women’s basketball teams spoke to youth at Allen Middle School in Greensboro, N.C.

During the opening of the program, the students of the middle school introduced themselves, as well as the Aggie student-athletes.  Once everyone became acquainted, the Aggies then went on to each give a monologue covering various subjects such as the importance of education, personal experiences, life as a college basketball player and so forth. The players who dedicated their time were R.J. Buck, Lawrence Smith, Waylan Siverand and Bruce Beckford from the men’s team; and Aprill McRae, Jasmine Parker, Adriana Nazario, DeAndra Davis, Debbie Smith, Ariel Bursey, Christina Carter and Tracy King, from the women’s team.

King, who was recently earned the Outstanding Honors Student award from A&T’s School of Technology, spoke first.  She delivered a very encouraging speech, informing the students on her various achievements not just on but off the court as well.

As she concluded her speech, King stated: “The sky is the limit, you can do whatever you want to do, but your academics come first.”

Buck on the other hand allowed the students to relate by sharing a personal experience, explaining how he was once in their shoes and didn’t take school seriously. He illustrated to them that academics are essential in order to get to the next level.  Siverand then explained that staying in the books kept him from following some of his peers in the wrong direction, while Davis stressed the importance of having a back-up plan.

All of the other players as well as the coaching staff also offered very valuable advice during the monologue and question and answer portions. They portrayed to the students that staying on top of their work, staying focused and out of trouble, going to class and excelling in their sports all intertwines.

As usual, the Aggies were enthusiastic and proud to help uplift the youth of our community. 

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