LINCROFT: Ex-NFL-ERS TAKE IT TO THE HOOP

Former Steelers player Rian Wallace gets some competition in the form of a football for the attention of a young fan. (Photo by Wil Fulton. Click to enlarge)

By WIL FULTON

It was average Joes vs football pros on the hardwood last Friday night as local amateur and school basketball teams faced off against a “dream-team” consisting of past and present NFL players – all in the name of charity.

The Hoops for Hope event, created by local son turned NFL player Lonnie Allgood and held at Brookdale Community College’s Collins Arena, consisted of a series of quick exhibition games and other activities to raise money for  Dreams for Kids and the YMCA’s Strong Kids program, dedicated to providing underprivileged kids with a healthy lifestyle.

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RED BANK: EX-NFL-ER BRINGS HOOPS & HOPE

Lonnie Allgood getting out the word about Hoops for Hope at the Red Bank Street Fair earlier this month. (Click to enlarge)

By WIL FULTON

Former NFL wide receiver Lonnie Allgood is one of the select few: a Red Bank kid who had the talent and drive to live out the big league dream.

But he didn’t get there on his own, he says. Long retired from the limelight after seven years in the league, he still considers the experiences and people he met at the Community YMCA in his hometown an integral part of his character.

“I spent a lot of time at the Y when I was growing up in west Red Bank,” Allgood told redbankgreen, “and I met a lot of great role models there who really helped me while I was younger.”

Now, he’s trying to give back to the community that made him who he is by inspiring kids to live their lives the right way. On Friday night, the YMCA and Allgood’s charity foundation, Dreams for Kids, are teaming up for their first ever Hoops for Hope event, a basketball tournament featuring Allgood’s professional gridiron star friends squaring off against local hoopsters – including members of the Red Bank PBA, students from Red Bank Charter School, and Monmouth University Women’s Basketball team – all in the name of charity.

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