This post is sponsored by Future for Football.
College football was a central part of my childhood growing up in a university town. On game days, the town shuts down (it’s a great time to shop at the grocery store if you’re not a fan!).
My family was there for every home game, often enduring three-digit temperatures or freezing cold snow. We attended pep rallies, celebrations at the airport welcoming the team and end of the year bowl games.
Beyond the games, I remember how involved the players and coaches were in our community. They visited elementary schools. They signed footballs when we ran into them in the store. They participated in community service. They were role models on and off the field.
Now that I have children of my own, we all attend together. We love cheering on our team each weekend, and the kids each started attending as early as two weeks old! Now that my oldest is in middle school, we have started going to their future high school team’s games. They see hard work, attention to academics in addition to athletics, and community involvement — all qualities I want to instill in them as they become adults.
After an exciting college gameday, my front yard will be filled with kids playing a pick-up game of football. The neighborhood kids gather outside our front door, choosing a quarterback and receiver for each team. They fight over which tree is the goal line boundary and whether the little sister should be flagged for holding.
There are plenty of ways for kids to move from pick-up games to more organized leagues. One of the things I love about football leagues is that kids can choose what method of play they prefer and not feel pressured to play at a level they aren’t comfortable with.
We know plenty of kids who started in flag football to learn the game, and the importance of teamwork who choose to stay at that level. We know other families that have made the jump from flag to tackle football. With more than 2 million kids around the country playing football, there is something for everyone!
If you’re looking for a league in your area, use the Future for Football League Finder here.