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maragin
06-01-2007, 06:52 PM
Apparently Keith posterized some poor teacher.

Was directed to this through our friends at the Star boards:

http://www.cantonrep.com/index.php?ID=357625&r=0&Category=&subCategoryID=0

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NBA’s McLeod slams it at Massillon
Friday, June 1, 2007
By JOSEPH GARTRELL
repository staff writer

MASSILLON It’s often said that NBA referees favor the home team. This time the evidence of bias was clearer than ever.

With under two minutes to play in the second annual fourth-graders versus teachers game at Franklin School, referee Keith McLeod stole the basketball at midcourt and threw down a reverse dunk for the home team students.

McLeod, a former Canton McKinley Bulldog, is a member of the NBA’s Indiana Pacers. His spectacular dunk capped off a student-team win. It was a day these students have been looking forward to all school year and couldn’t quite believe when it actually arrived.

The students poked their heads out of classrooms as he walked by, making sure it was him. “It’s Keith McLeod,” several students said.

“They kept asking how much we had to pay to get him here,” said Steve Reinhart, a second-grade teacher and event organizer. He assured the students. “He’s here to see you. He doesn’t want to get paid.”

McLeod was more than happy to attend, culminating a yearlong good behavior contest at the school. A five-strikes-and-your-out policy had been in effect since the beginning of the school year, and during the last month or so as the game neared, teachers rewarded outstanding behavior with tickets.

The names of those with the most tickets were put into a drawing. Fifteen of the well-behaved ballers were given an opportunity to take on the teachers while McLeod refereed the action.

“We really have seen an improvement of behavior,” Reinhart said, “even with the poorly behaved kids.”

Before the game, McLeod visited classrooms and spoke with students about the importance of doing the right things, working hard and getting a good education. He told them he wouldn’t have made it to the NBA without the knowledge and experience he gained at Bowling Green State University.

He took one behaviorally challenged student aside, put his arm around him and offered gentle words of encouragement.

“With me being in the position I’m in, it’s an opportunity for me to come back and help out,” McLeod said.

McLeod, who entered the NBA in 2003 with Minnesota, hosts a summer basketball camp in Canton and felt that it was important to expand his reach to areas outside of Canton.

“For me to come to Massillon was big,” he said. When he was a kid in Canton, he said it was “huge” when local NBA players Gary Grant and Phil Hubbard visited his school. He said he wants to keep the trend alive.

After the game, which began and ended with points from fourth-grader Michael Pettis, students lined up to get McLeod’s autograph. He signed and smiled his easy smile.

“I feel real good that the kids had a good time,” McLeod said. “That’s the most important thing.”

Reach Repository writer Joe Gartrell at (330) 580-8562 or e-mail: joe.gartrell@cantonrep.com

Shade
06-01-2007, 07:41 PM
Bravo on the title. I was just thinking about that earlier.

Keith McLeod shall henceforth be known as "Highlander." :cool:

Anthem
06-01-2007, 07:46 PM
Pretty good article.

I would have loved to see an NBA player slam on my 4th-grade teacher.

Kegboy
06-01-2007, 08:53 PM
:cool:

Doug
06-02-2007, 01:21 AM
Bravo on the title.

No doubt. I didn't even read the post. Great title. Made me smile. But I've had (edit: more than a couple) beers, so what wouldn't.