While Garth Brooks was in Bossier City, Louisiana, last weekend during his World Tour, he took the time to visit a youth football camp he sponsored with Teammates for Kids. Brooks joined featured coach Rudy Niswanger, former Kansas City Chiefs center and a Monroe native, to welcome seventy-five boys and girls ages 9-13 to the free event at Airline High School. The kids ran drills and relays and played a scrimmage, soaking up every minute of fun in the sweltering heat. Brooks and Niswanger were right there with them, running and throwing, coaching and encouraging.
The young athletes were selected from several local organizations: Salvation Army Boys & Girls Club, YMCA of Northwest Louisiana, SPAR, Bossier City Schools, Bossier City Parks & Recreation, Ekhaya Youth Project, and Volunteers for Youth Justice.
Niswanger, who played at LSU before going pro, has been a Teammate since 2007.
Brooks talked to the camp participants about the day's main message--love. “The greatest thing these kids learn today is how to love one another,” he said. “They learn respect and attitude – a lot of words they already knew, but we’re going to keep drilling it into them.”
Teammates For Kids presents the Good Teammate Award at each youth sports camp they sponsor. The award recognizes the young athletes who best demonstrate the traits of a Total Teammate, including leadership, toughness, unselfishness, and respect for the game and all of its participants. In Bossier City, Good Teammate Awards were presented to: Bryson Rachal, age 9; Brandon David, age 11; and Taylor Brown, age 13.
Teammates will continue to partner with Brooks to hold youth sports camps at every city on his World Tour. Brooks and Teammate athletes in each city will volunteer their time to coach kids in football, basketball, baseball, hockey, or soccer.