As I skimmed through Facebook today I found an interesting status update shared by one of my friends. It was from Fred VanVleet’s fan page. If you haven’t heard already, Fred VanVleet is a college sophomore who attends Wichita State in Kansas. The Shockers, who went 34-0 this season, were led by VanVleet and fellow teammates to earn a top #1 seed in the Midwest for this year’s NCAA March Madness Basketball Tournament.
Fred also hails from Rockford, Illinois…
His journey has been an epic one that started right in the hard parts of Rockford. Growing up on the west side of Rockford with his mother, step father, and brothers, he was pushed to his limits by a step father who refused to let his step son “sit around and be a bum”. Fred attended high school at Auburn where he quickly became a star player and turned heads around the stateline for his basketball skills.
One of the most inspirational pieces I have read on this subject and Fred’s upbringing can be found in an article by Jason King, College Basketball National Lead Writer at BleacherReport.com.
On the status update the administrator explains they have been aiming to work with Rockford businesses, more specifically bar and grill establishments, to initiate viewing parties for the Wichita State Shockers’ games during the NCAA tournament, which begins March 18th. The goal is to get support from business owners to offer discounts for fans wearing Wichita State or Auburn gear. The hope is to get more Rockford citizens to support Fred VanVleet and the Shockers as his team hopefully progresses through the tournament.
If businesses choose to agree to pushing the cause, not only will fans be able to show support for a Rockford citizen making positive headlines for the city, businesses will most likely see an influx in traffic which is ultimately good for the local economy.
March is a big month already as it is for the tournament, but let’s make this one special since one of our own has done his part in helping put Rockford on the map in a positive light!
Categories: Community & Events