Pittsburgh Steelers linebacker LaMarr Woodley gives back - ABC 12 – WJRT – Flint, MI

Pittsburgh Steelers linebacker LaMarr Woodley gives back

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SAGINAW (WJRT) -

(08/15/12) - A former Saginaw High School star is helping hundreds of young athletes in his hometown.

Pittsburgh Steelers linebacker LaMarr Woodley will donate more than $60,000 to the Saginaw Public Schools athletic department.

Facing major budget problems, the Saginaw Public School District was set to charge every student athlete $75 to participate.

Thanks to Woodley, athletes won't have to tackle a financial problem when they're on the field.

Saginaw High School football player Terrance Spiller thought he would have to pay $75 to play football this season.

He can save that money thanks to a $60,000 donation from a fellow Trojan who's also one of his favorite athletes - LaMarr Woodley.

"He's been helping us out a lot. In years in the past, he's donated cleats and other things like that and a lot of players was kind of worried about the $75 to play because everybody don't have it like that and when I break the news to them today, I'm sure everybody's going to be happy," he said.

The pay to participate program was scheduled to kick off this school year. The district had never charged student athletes before.

The athletic director for the district says Woodley's donation will help students and families across the city.

"It provides each student an opportunity to play. Some of the social economic problems that we're having here in Saginaw, that takes a lot of pressure off a lot of the students, the parents. Now we know that a student athlete will play or participate if he or she wants to go out for a team," said Jeffrey Goodwine, the academic athletic director for the district.

That means Spiller and his teammates can continue being leaders on the football field.

"Our team, it teaches us discipline. How to be a man in a way. Responsibility, like being here on time. Work ethics and how to get along with others, so it carries over into school and the real world when we go off to college and he's just giving everybody a chance to continue that," Spiller said.

Goodwine says the donation will also help offset costs for some equipment and transportation.

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