Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Pierre Garçon gives football uniforms to three local high schools

When Springbrook Athletic Director Rob Wendel got a phone call recently about new uniforms for the Blue Devils football team, he asked his football coach, Adam Bahr, what this was all about. Bahr wasn’t quite sure.

“I said ‘I guess it could have been this contest we entered,’ ” Bahr recalled late last week. “Honestly, I had forgotten all about it.”

Bahr’s guess turned out to be correct. The Montgomery County school was chosen as the Maryland winner of a contest sponsored by Pierre Garcon, a contest that received virtually no fanfare. The Redskins receiver — working with Russell Athletic, one of his sponsors – announced online that he would personally provide 150 new football uniforms to one high school each in Virginia, Maryland and the District. The winners would be chosen via Facebook votes.

Bahr had gone to Springbrook himself, and one of his friends from high school suggested he launch an effort to win the prize. But neither he nor his assistants tracked the voting or mounted a coordinated campaign. and now, suddenly, their school’s worn-out uniforms would be obsolete.

“What it means for our program, it’s unbelievable,” said Bahr a longtime assistant who just completed his first year as the school’s head coach. “Our football budget and our athletic budget – like many other schools in the area, I’m sure – are just strapped for cash. It’s an unbelievable gift and gesture, and we couldn’t be more grateful.”

The reaction was similar across the Potomac in Fairfax County, where Thomas Jefferson Director of Student Activities Shawn DeRose hadn’t even heard of this contest. Social-media savvy students there decided to push for the prize; DeRose knew nothing until receiving a call saying the Colonials had been chosen.

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