Grace football reaches out to at-risk children

By Coleman Swierc

TYLER, TEXAS (KLTV) - There was a football game at Grace on Monday.

Everyone playing, won.

The Grace Community varsity football team hosted around 50 kids from the Azleway Boys Ranch, as they ran through drills, and played 7 on 7 football.

In the words of Grace head coach Mike Maddox, the kids did not play against each other, but with each other.

"It just ties a little bit of the community together with what they're going through," said Maddox, "If we can lift them up a little bit and make their day a little bit brighter, we want our program to be used as that kind of a tool."

Maddox came up with the idea two years ago, two try and influence the at-risk children, with a positive football experience.

The Azleway kids also got to wear their own Grace jersey.

"It's neat, but just for our guys to be able to get out off campus," said Azleway teacher Brian Pendleton, "And be able to interact in a normal setting, is a huge experience for our kids."

The night wrapped up with bible study and dinner.

*Copyright, KLTV, 2010.