Football, it’s one of America’s favorite pastimes. For the Denham Springs Yellow Jackets, it is something that brings some hope. After the devastating flooding, now, the school is left with this to clean up. Coach Dru Nettles said the community and the football team have to adjust to a new normal.
“It affected so many. You know, you can’t really feel sorry for yourself and look back on just my situation. You got to get back up, like football teaches you, get back off the ground and get back to work,” said Coach Nettles.
That is exactly what the Yellow Jackets are doing, but with some help.
“The NFL and the NFL Foundation have donated a minimum of $500,000, half a million dollars, worth of finances and much needed resources. Brand new helmets, shoulder pads, just to help uplift the community, and just to ensure that despite what happened with the flooding, that they’re not denied the right to start their season and have the opportunity to win this year,” said Roman Oben, the Senior Director of the NFL Youth and High School Football.
NFL officials came together to give back with some familiar faces including one of the Saints mascots Gumbo and former Saints Wide Receiver Michael Lewis.
“Most kids don’t really know the devastation like their parents do, but to put a smile on their face after they have lost everything, then you come out here and their smiling and having fun, you know, that’s touching somebody,” said Lewis. “That’s just showing that what being with the New Orleans Saints organization, we give back. We try to do whatever we can.”
“It’s uplifting. Our kids, our community have been through a tough few weeks and for them to reach out and assist us and help these young people,” said Coach Nettles. “The kids get some needed items and some fun back in their lives and some normal things instead of the devastation they faced here in the community.”
The Yellow Jackets will play their first game of the season next Friday, September 9th, against the Tara High Trojans at 7 P.M.