Former NFL linebacker to speak at Fairland schools March 17

Published 12:00 am Monday, March 14, 2005

Special to the Tribune

PROCTORVILLE - Former NFL linebacker Steve Grant will speak at Fairland Middle School and Fairland High School March 17.

Grant, who played six seasons for the Indianapolis Colts and one for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers during a pro career that began in 1992, will speak at Fairland Middle at 9 a.m. and at Fairland High at 1:15 p.m.

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A former All-American at West Virginia University, Grant will focus on helping students make the right choices in life, sharing his experiences and offering a presentation on alcohol and drug abuse. Grant also will stress the importance of academics, morals, values and faith, while encouraging students to do their best.

Grant also will speak at Huntington High School, Cabell Midland High School and Barboursville Middle School, as well as at Steele Memorial United Methodist Church, 733 Shaw St., Barboursville, W.Va., during his three-day visit, sponsored by the Huntington Area Fellowship of Christian Athletes. The church assembly, scheduled for 7 p.m. March 16, is open to the public.

"We're very pleased to have Steve Grant here," FCA Huntington Area board president Ralph May said. "He's someone our students will benefit from hearing."

Grant speaks via Sports World Ministries, based in Indianapolis. He and more than a dozen former professional football players travel the country speaking to students.

"We've had Steve in our area and he does a great job," said Keith Tyler, Charleston Area director of FCA. "He gives a great message and the students are very receptive to him."

Grant shares his personal experiences with students.

"I stumbled through life wondering who I was, trying to find answers in power, possessions, wealth and women, only to realize that the more I sought these things, the emptier I felt," Grant said.

Grant, a native of Miami, will stress the importance of finding a purpose in life and will encourage students to make changes that will allow them to turn away from despair and realign their personal priorities to be the best they can be.

"If Steve can't motivate them, nobody can," said Don Cordery, a representative for Sports World. "He's very, very good."

Grant made the Athletic Director's Academic Honor Roll in 1991 and 1992 and was named to the All-Big East Conference team each of those years. He also was selected WVU's most valuable player as a junior and as a senior, as well as earning MVP honors in the Blue-Gray All-Star Game. Grant was voted the Colts' hard-nosed player of the year.