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TAKG brings more fans to MC basketball games

January 21, 2011

On Saturday Jan. 15, against Lawrence University, the men and women’s basketball teams had 20-30 more children in the stands than usual.

This was due to the NCAA take a kid to the game promotion (TAKG) which has been held at Monmouth College basketball games for the second consecutive year.

The NCAA has been doing this promotion for 16 years. All colleges and universities are asked to participate in the event which takes place during football and basketball seasons. More than 700 TAKG game are scheduled nationwide throughout this season.

“This is a wonderful opportunity for our college community and the Monmouth community to make a connection,” said Scots’ women’s coach Melissa Bittner. “We do numerous community activities throughout the year, but this is specifically designed to benefit Monmouth’s youth.”

The MC basketball teams encouraged adults to bring children ages 14 and under to Saturday’s games. At the halftime of both games, children could participate in various activities including; hula hoop and passing and shooting games. The prizes included; posters and rulers provided from the NCAA, along with a coupon for a free cone from Dairy Queen and a free movie rental from Family Video. 20-30 children participated in each halftime, some participated in both games and others just came to one game or the other, which compared to last year, was about equal. Admission is also free during this promotion. Big Red was also scheduled to make an appearance at the games Saturday and take pictures with fans of all ages.

“This promotion benefits Monmouth college basketball teams by increasing fan base, excitement, and gets the community involved in a bonding experience with free entertainment for the kids to develop relationships with college athletes who inspire them to be active,” said Dan Nolan. “Monmouth is unique because all our basketball games are free but it’s a win win for everyone because it’s free entertainment and it offers insight to kids how different college ball is from high school.”

Coach Bittner plans to continue this promotion for years to come.

“This is a great way to introduce kids to the college game and experience college basketball in person,” said Bittner. “You miss so much of the atmosphere of college ball if you just sit at home and watch it on TV. Our hope is that by coming to the game, kids will become interested in athletics and become more physically active and healthier. You’ll want to get there early, while we still have plenty of prizes.”

The Student-Athlete Advisory Committee  along with the Monmouth College women’s basketball team helped with the various activities the kids participated in.

“I would like to thank Student-Athlete Advisory Committee  for helping with the halftime of the women’s game and the women’s basketball team for helping with the halftime of the men’s game,” said Bittner.

Some of the information in this article came from a Monmouth College press release.

BY KELSEY BESHEARS
Sports Editor

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