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Chap1 In November 2000 an 11 and 12 year-old championship football game got violent Not with the kids but with the adult parents and coaches of the kids The game was between the Cougars and the Seminoles The Cougars had been undefeated all season long including an earlier victory over the Seminoles But this game was different than the earlier meeting of the two little league giants by halftime the Seminoles led 20-2 and by the end of the game the final score was 27-2 At the end of the game as the kids lined up to shake hands as they did after every game the parents and coaches got hostile As Seminole Parents and coaches started rejoicing the Cougar parents began to take offense The kids watched from the endzone in disgust as small fights broke out everywhere between the 100 or so adults This display of poor sportsmanship ruined a lot of the fun for the kids who were there just for a little friendly competition Sports are very important in developing successful hard-working and productive adult members of the community They have been proven to build self-esteem produce a level of friendly competition and build character Each year upwards of 30 million kids will compete on some sort of sports team Many of these kids are part of a group experts refer to as at-risk youth The At-risk youth are kids that come from one of the following situations live in chronic poverty go to a poor school have poor school performance are in a negative peer group have poor social skills use drugs or are with a guardian who does is a minority live in a bad neighborhood or have stressful family situation Depending on the number of categories a child falls into and the severity of the problems kids are placed in different levels of risk Studies over the past 30 years of more than a million kids have
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