HORN LAKE, Miss. -- A coach is taking life lessons he learned growing up in Detroit and bringing them to Horn Lake.
Coach Randy Allen is offering free football training and tutoring to kids whose parents normally cannot afford after school activities. Children who participate can also earn a scholarship to college.
“Always look forward! Don't worry about who is behind you,” said Coach Allen to his players at Maxey Park. “We’re not in a competition with each other. Let's do it again! Let's go!”
These kids call him 'Coach.'
“I grew up in Detroit where we had recreation stuff and then that faded away. That’s when all the bad stuff came in the city. I don't want that stuff to come to Horn Lake,” said Allen.
Allen works six days a week, sometimes twelve hours a day, at a factory and then spends most of his free time either teaching kids football or helping them with their studies.
He named his program Southern Y.E.S. The ‘Y’ is for youth, the ‘E’ is for education and ‘S’ is for sports. He's trying to bring structure to the lives of boys ages 4 to 14 so they stay on track. He also offers guidance that some might not get in single-parent homes.
“You are kind of taking on a father role,” said reporter Sabrina hall.
“Yes, ma'am. Father, big brother, uncle, cousin, whatever it takes to help these kids be better,” said Allen.
Coach Allen also sees college in their futures. He’s partnered up with a national organization, United Youth Football & Cheer, that will offer the kids scholarships if they stick with his program. He says all Horn Lake parents need to do is get them to practice.
“The best part of it to me is when I am in the grocery store and out of nowhere I hear a young kid hollering ‘Hey, coach!’ and it lets me know that I have reached someone and they look forward to seeing me again,” Allen said with a smile.
Coach Allen offers football coaching for free in Horn Lake at Maxey Park on Monday, Wednesdays and Fridays from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. He offers tutoring Tuesdays and Thursdays from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. Kids who stick with the program can earn $1,000 a year towards college.
You can contact him at 662-420-5077.