4th Annual Pirate GridIron Classic
by Kevin Monroe

It’s hard to believe it’s already the 4th year of our fundraising event.  For the past three years Former ECU football players have come back to play in a charity basketball game at Minges Coliseum.  Each year the basketball game gets bigger and better and next month on April 8th we will be coming together once again for the very worthy cause.  The basketball game is the major fund raiser for Future INC, and has allowed us to do a lot for the children of Greenville. 

It was in 2003 when Troy Smith came to me and said he wanted to start and organization that would look after the underprivileged children of the south Greenville area where he grew up.  We decided to start Future INC, and ask our former teammates to help raise money for the cause. FUTURE, Incorporated is a nonprofit organization designed to offer positive alternatives to “at risk” children in the West and South Greenville Communities.  Through mentoring, we provide our “kids” with the opportunity to see beyond their circumstances and seek to realize their dreams.  Constant reassurance aimed at encouraging their spirits and self-esteem has enabled our four-year-old program to redirect some of the “lost” while driving others to maintain their focus. 

Last year’s proceeds enabled us to not only sponsor different “in-town” functions for our “kids” and supplement the cost of some of their school-related extracurricular activities but we also proudly escorted 40 of them to Greensboro, NC on a tour of North Carolina A&T State University.  The kids had a wonderful time and some of them had never even considered the idea that they could go to college until that day.

I have once again reached out to my former teammates and they will all be back to help us raise money.  You can look forward to seeing such former ECU Football stars as Marcus Crandell, Danny Gonzalez, Keith Stokes, Jerris McPhail, Larry Shannon, Jeff Kerr and many more.  If you have never come to the event, you have truly missed a good time.  The ECU pure gold dance team will perform and there will be a 3 point shoot out and dunk contest at half – time. 

We are still looking for sponsors and if you would like to be a sponsor or make a contribution please contact me via email at (Kevin Monroe) or call the radio station 252.317-1250.  You can mail a donation to Troy Smith, 1035 Spring Forest Road Ste.  D-4, Greenville, North Carolina 27834. All checks should be made payable to Future, INC.

Kevin Monroe