El Paso middle schools to split $500,000 for athletic programs

Local Sports

Courtesy Sun Bowl Association

EL PASO, Texas (KTSM)- A Christmas miracle occurred as America’s favorite breakfast cereal and the foundation for America’s largest sporting goods retailer collaborated to help save school sports in El Paso.

Tony the Tiger and The DICK’S Sporting Goods Foundation (DSGF) teamed up and made a surprise drive-up and pep rally at Wiggs Middle School this morning.

In partnership with The DICK’S Foundation, Tony the Tiger called on his friend, SunBowl alum and football Hall of Famer LaDainian Tomlinson to break the news to aspiring young athletes. Together, they delivered much-needed sporting goods equipment to students at Wiggs Middle School, a release said.

This collaboration also gave a “Sports Matter” grant to every public middle school athletic department in El Paso.

A total of $500,000 was granted to help give more middle school students access to sports, according to a release.

“At DICK’S we believe that sports make people better and we are committed to supporting all youth athletes in need through our Sports Matter program…and help provide much-needed funding and solutions to the communities we serve, especially here in El Paso,” said Aimee Watters, executive director of The DICK’S Sporting Goods Foundation in a release.

The release states Kellogg’s Frosted Flakes was announced as the title sponsor of the newly named Tony the Tiger Sun Bowl in August 2019, making Tony the Tiger the first mascot to ever lend his name to a college football bowl game.

Brant Wheaton, marketing director of Kelloggs U.S. ready-to-eat-cereal segment said, “sports are vital to teaching leadership, teamwork, and confidence in kids, and that’s why Mission Tiger and Sports Matter are essential in filling the funding gaps for middle school athletic programs all across the country.”

Officials say the Sports Matter program strives to increase awareness for the growing issue of underfunded youth athletics nationwide and provide much-needed support through equipment, uniform, and monetary donations.

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