March 16 – March 22, 2014
Welcome to week one hundred three of the Sports Doing Good newsletter. This week’s first 10 stories include:
- NHL’s San Jose Sharks welcome youth with heart condition to practice, signs 1-day contract, and gets to experience pre-game introduction
- Chevy, ManU Launch Campaign to Help Underprivileged Kids Experience Soccer
- Cooperation and Collaboration – Spokane Indians baseball uniforms sport Salish word
- The Winter Paralympics Are The World’s Best Showcase Of Sports Technology
- Knight Commission, panelists call for stronger focus on educational mission in college sports
- OK, Glass, have an NBA player dunk in my face
- Monumental Sports & Entertainment Foundation and Telos Corporation Donate More than $30,000 to TAPS (Tragedy Assistance Program for Survivors)
- New Jersey Devils and Prudential Center Launch MY TOWN Series
- North Dakota State Thinks Big, Has Fun, Earns Attention
- “CARTON BLANC”: a symbolic initiative to celebrate the International Day of Sport for Development and Peace.
There is a recent trend in the world of sports experiences that we are more than happy to feature. While the situation often entails someone dealing with a difficult health or personal problem, the response has regularly been multi-faceted, profound, and inspirational. An example of the trend is our first story this week as a young man with a lifelong heart ailment was given the full “professional player” experience by his favorite team, the NHL’s San Jose Sharks.
Not to minimize at all the value of a signed picture or jersey or a visit by a favorite player, but some of the stories we have been featuring involve teams, leagues, companies and organizations providing a “360 degree” experience for the person, often a child or teenager. We have seen everything from contracts signed, press conferences held, and involvement in team practices and scrimmages, amongst other perks. These entities have tapped into that most special of feeling – the love we have for sports and those who perform at the highest levels – and are providing not a fleeting moment but rather an experience of a lifetime. We applaud all of those involved for sharing their time, resources, and empathy for those dealing with difficult life circumstances. Everyone deserves to smile and be happy and sports continually serves to make that a reality.
Other stories that we are happy to feature include: Chevy and Manchester United; the Spokane Indians baseball team; Google Glass; Monumental Sports & Entertainment; the New Jersey Devils; bracket busters like North Dakota State University; the International Day of Sport for Development and Peace (April 6); the Special Olympics; and NFL Hall of Famer Anthony Muñoz; amongst others.
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So enjoy. And have a good week.
NHL’s San Jose Sharks welcome youth with heart condition to practice, signs 1-day contract, and gets to experience pre-game introduction
Sam Tageson practiced with the Sharks this morning, and will skate onto the ice with the team through the trademark shark head Tuesday night before San Jose’s game with the Florida Panthers, then stand on the blue line during the national anthem. “No way to top today,” he told reporters in his own media scrum after the first event in a day arranged through the Make-A-Wish Foundation and the Sharks Foundation.
Chevy, ManU Launch Campaign to Help Underprivileged Kids Experience Soccer
As part of the cause program, Chevy and Manchester United will send the team’s top current and former players to developing countries to work with kids and coaches. The automaker says it is doing so now in Bandung, Indonesia, where it is also rebuilding the town’s soccer pitch on behalf of a local organization for people with HIV/AIDS and people who use drugs. Chevrolet is also talking about the work online with videos on the program at a co-branded microsite.
Cooperation and Collaboration – Spokane Indians baseball uniforms sport Salish word
In Spokane – or should we say Sp’q’n’i – both the tribe and its namesake team have worked hard in recent decades to establish the name Spokane Indians as a tribute, as opposed to just a mascot. In 2006, the tribe helped to create new circular team logo, with words written in the Salish language. This year, the tribe worked with the team in creating the new Sp’q’n’i jersey, and supplied the team with an accurate rendering of the word (which also includes a final symbol not found in the English alphabet).
Beginning in the 2014 season, the Spokane Indians baseball team will sport the team name in Salish on home jerseys.
The Winter Paralympics Are The World’s Best Showcase Of Sports Technology
For the winter games, whatever sport you decide to do, you need equipment for it,” he says. Whether that’s flying down an alpine ski course on a sit-ski, or curling from a wheelchair, or playing hockey in a sled, the demands of the cold weather sports include gear. And it’s phenomenally competitive. The Paralympics, like the Olympics, are now a game of centimeters, grams, and milliseconds.
Alpine skiers use a sit-ski along with two ski blade-like poles for steering.
Knight Commission, panelists call for stronger focus on educational mission in college sports
Panelists expressed a strong desire to address issues of health, safety and educational outcomes for college athletes from a variety of perspectives. During the meeting, University of Hartford President Walter Harrison credited academic reforms inspired by the Knight Commission with increasing graduation rates for Division I athletes to 82 percent.
OK, Glass, have an NBA player dunk in my face
Johnson, McCallum, and Thompson were wearing Google Glass as part of a new program the Kings have started that is designed to let fans see things like shootarounds, pre-game workouts, and even in-game huddles from the players’ perspective. Using technology developed by San Francisco’s CrowdOptic, the Kings plan on making feeds from Glass being worn by players, announcers, the team’s mascot, and even its cheerleaders, available during games to anyone running its app on their own Glass, on TV, and on the arena’s JumboTron.
Sacramento Kings players Orlando Johnson, Ray McCallum, and Jason Thompson (left to right) scrimmage while wearing Google Glass. (Credit: James Martin/CNET)
Monumental Sports & Entertainment Foundation and Telos Corporation Donate More than $30,000 to TAPS (Tragedy Assistance Program for Survivors)
Courage hats autographed by various Wizards players including Bradley Beal, Marcin Gortat, Otto Porter, John Wall and Martell Webster were sold at the Verizon Center Team Store resulting in proceeds of $31,571.77. During the Wizards game against the Brooklyn Nets on March 15, Ted Leonsis, majority owner, chairman and CEO of Monumental Sports & Entertainment was joined by John Wood, Telos CEO and Chairman to present the funds to Bonnie Carroll, founder and president of TAPS.
New Jersey Devils and Prudential Center Launch MY TOWN Series
MY TOWN will celebrate greatness throughout the stories of everyday leaders and heroes in our towns. Nominations can be submitted by visiting: newjerseydevils.com/mytown. “We are honored to celebrate our dedicated fans and work with local community leaders to develop inspiring platforms that give back,” said Hugh Weber, President of Devils Arena Entertainment. “We work hard to represent our community, and to create experiences through Devils games and concerts that we can all be proud of.”
North Dakota State Thinks Big, Has Fun, Earns Attention
But Thursday’s basketball victory was bigger, Taylor said. Such things are hard to measure, but Taylor told the story of a friend who wore a North Dakota State jacket into a Washington, D.C., bar to watch Thursday’s game. The bar erupted in excitement when guard Lawrence Alexander made a 3-pointer to force overtime, and patrons cheered the Bison to victory, 3,000 miles from Spokane and a world away from the college’s campus in Fargo.
Lawrence Alexander of North Dakota State forced overtime on Thursday with a 3-pointer. Credit Kirby Lee/USA Today Sports, via Reuters
“CARTON BLANC”: a symbolic initiative to celebrate the International Day of Sport for Development and Peace.
To celebrate 6 April, Peace and Sport invites you to rally around the symbol of a white card and tell people what you are doing to play your part in peace throughout the world. Whether or not you’ve registered a project on the April6 website, and no matter where you live, you can make known your support of the peace through sport movement everywhere in the world. Along with Paula Radcliffe, Aisam Qureshi and other Champions for Peace and international sports men and women, take the stage and hold up your card like a referee, no matter where you are and who you’re with, and show everyone that… you too are an actor for peace!
THE NEXT 10 STORIES
‘What you get out is much more than what you put in’: Tony Reali on volunteering with Special Olympics Unified Sports
(Q) With so many worthwhile organizations to choose from, why did you choose to volunteer for Special Olympics?
(A) I’m obviously drawn to the sports aspect of it, but more than anything, it’s how sports transforms lives, relationships and communities. The power of sports lies in its ability to instill, inspire and affect positive change – and that’s at the core of what Special Olympics does. Athletes have opportunities to discover new skills and abilities, which leads to joy and confidence on and off the playing field. This leads to a more inclusive and fulfilling life.
Play: An Unexpected Force in Jumpstarting Our Economic Engine
That’s the lesson of our experience at the LEGO Foundation. It was also the subject of a session that we just held at a meeting of the Clinton Global Initiative, where we brought together executives from across the world to discuss how play and creativity can improve quality learning and contribute to a stronger workforce. The urgency of the task is clear from this shocking fact: while 98 percent of three-year-olds register genius levels of creative thinking; yet only 2 percent of people over the age of 25 do.
Celebrating the power of sport at the Palais des Nations
The International Day of Sport for Development and Peace holds special value for the UNOSDP. It speaks directly to the significance of the field we are working in and for, and highlights the general acknowledgement of the power of sport to advance the development and peace objectives of the United Nations. For this reason, the UNOSDP will not let this day pass by in silence.
Michael Sam’s Open Letter to the University of Missouri
To my fellow University of Missouri students, athletes, faculty, alumni and supporters: From my first recruiting trip to the University of Missouri, I felt something extraordinary and special—something I didn’t feel anyplace else. I didn’t have a name for it then; I do now. It’s called family. And to me that family is defined by unconditional love.
Earning Their Stripes as Umpires and Referees
Mr. Martinez, the former math teacher, is confident that his experience with unruly high school students has prepared him for abuse on the field. Adolescents, he observes, “are really sassy, and they try to provoke you. They try to get you to say things and do things so that they can try to get you in trouble.” He will soon have the opportunity to display his cool in the heat of a professional baseball game. Last month, he accepted a job as an umpire in the lowest rung on the professional baseball ladder.
David Martinez prepares to make a call during a baseball game between the College of Saint Rose and Molloy College at the Lynn University baseball complex in Boca Raton, Fla. Credit Oscar Hidalgo for The New York Times
NFL Hall of Famer Anthony Muñoz Living a New Legacy
During his football days, Muñoz enjoyed working with youngsters (he has two of his own) and stayed active in the Cincinnati area in drug and alcohol education programs, in addition to being active in numerous charities. He waited until eight years after his 1992 retirement to fully dedicate his energy to such work. “I wanted to make sure that the mission was set and that I had my partners set, and that I had the amount of time.”
Athlete’s Life: Female athletic trainers making strides
Alpert is only starting to be aware of how rare it is for women to win those coveted head trainer jobs with professional teams. Even though women are now a majority in the industry — a result of women coming into the business during the past decade — they hold just a few of the most lucrative jobs in the industry. In recent years, more women have been coming into the profession than men.
Father of Mariano Rivera calls Panama game ‘very special moment’
“We’re happy because it’s here in our country, and because Mariano always dreamed about this when he was playing in New York. He’s happy for the Yankees, that they are finally here, because that is the team he signed with that that gave him an opportunity.”
Joe Girardi says Derek Jeter, seen here at Rod Carew Stadium in Panama, is ‘a lot further ahead than he was last spring.’ Corey Sipkin/New York Daily News
The Klitschkos: Fighting for Ukraine Amid Crimea Crisis
The Klitschko brothers, who rose to prominence together in boxing, have been deeply involved with the developments that have roiled Ukraine. Vitali, 42, led the country’s opposition party during months of protests that eventually drove President Viktor Yanukovych from office. He is running on a reform and anticorruption platform.
The organising committee for the 2014 South American Games in Santiago explains why it gave away most of its tickets for free.
The logic behind giving away the majority of tickets was to ensure that the events would sell out, and in hope that the South American Games would encourage a sports culture in Santiago and Chile as a whole. “We expect these Games to mark a new era in Chilean sport,” Herrera says.