In a state where the NFL seems to be dividing fans for other reasons than football, we can appreciate players using their platform and resources to bring people together and make a difference in the community.
Tyrann Mathieu understands the perils of flooding in Louisiana – when he was a boy, he picked up and moved to Texas for a time in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina.
With Baton Rouge devastated by recent flooding, Mathieu and fellow Louisiana State University product Patrick Peterson purchased needed clothing and school supplies for 700 children in the area, delivered Thursday with the help of the Boys & Girls Club.
“Me and Pat, we’re really fortunate being in the position that we are in, and obviously we have roots there,” Mathieu said. “We wanted to help any way we can. We wanted to target the kids. We know a lot of them lost everything in the flood, and we know school had just started, so we really thought about them.”
Peterson called Baton Rouge – where LSU is located – “my second home.” He has also teamed with “Win-Win Fantasy Football” to help raise money for the area.
“I thought it was a no-brainer to give a helping hand,” Peterson said. “There are
families of people who are in dire need, who have lost everything. I believe Ty sent back some goods, as far as toothbrushes and toothpaste. I sent back clothing, pillows, whatever the families may need.”
Mathieu said it’s something professional athletes have done in the past, noting New Orleans native Marshall Faulk helping once upon a time.
“They set that standard,” Mathieu said. “We just try to live up to it.”
Mathieu knows. He remembers living in a hotel after Hurricane Katrina, eating out of FEMA trucks. Both he and Peterson had been active on social media since the Baton Rouge floods, drawing attention to the problems. Now, they are doing what they can with supplies.
“It’s a very tragic situation,” Peterson said. “It seems like Louisiana can’t catch a break. All we can do is keep them in our prayers and do whatever we can as athletes and as fellow LSU athletes to give a helping hand.”