MURRAY — When you’re 6 feet 3 inches tall, a Division I basketball player and shooting hoops on an elementary school playground, odds are most of the shots you put up will go in.
But Megan Huff, who plays forward for the University of Utah and last season was named to the Pac-12 Women’s Basketball All-Conference Team, was less concerned about hers going in as those attempted by students at Parkside Elementary School during lunch recess Thursday.
Watching the students send up shot after shot, Huff offered enthusiastic encouragement.
Spenser Heaps, Deseret News
Utah women’s basketball players Kiana Moore and Niyah Becker greet students at Parkside Elementary School in Murray on Thursday, Oct. 11, 2018. Utah women’s basketball players went to the school to play with students during recess as part of the “real players don’t bully” campaign.
Bean said she learned recently that 75 percent of elementary school students at recess report bullying.
Growing up as a female athlete and “always wanting to play with the boys, you always kind of get looked down upon by your peers. For me, it’s just being able to step outside my comfort zone and being able to stand up to the bullies and do what I want to do, which is be active, play sports and do all I can at recess,” Bean said.
Andrew Robertson, site coordinator with Playworks Utah, said the nonprofit organization invited the U. women’s team to Parkside to encourage students to be active and to give them the opportunity to interact with collegiate-level athletes.
“If they can can play together respectfully, our kids should be able to, too,” he said.
Playworks Utah was founded on the belief that “the power of play brings out the best in everyone. We think by teaching values through games and teaching pro-social skills and conflict resolution, it will filter holistically through their lives,” Robertson said.
For example, if students playing four square dispute a ball touching a line, they play roshambo to resolve the disagreement.
“At Playworks, we believe roshambo has the power to save the world,” he said.
Source:: Deseret News – Sports News