NASHVILLE, Tenn. -- Titans cornerback Alterraun Verner surprised students and faculty at Apollo Middle School on Tuesday (9/13) to kick off the Titans Tuesdays school program.
Verner was the guest of honor at a special school-wide assembly to encourage the youth and share his personal message. The school was chosen to participate in the Titans PLAY 60 Challenge and Verner was on hand to speak about the program.
Apollo students will participate in the Titans PLAY 60 Challenge to become more physically active and will receive various prizes at the end of the challenge. Verner also stressed the importance of leading an active lifestyle which includes a healthy diet that includes low-fat, high fiber foods, low-fat dairy, fruits, vegetables, lean meats and whole grains as well as encouraging the students to get at least 60 minutes of active play per day.
Verner told the students that he wouldn't be the player he is today if he hadn't made good choices. During the assembly he also talked about the importance of staying focused during the week, making homework a priority before outside activities and staying positive.
"We spend hours in our meeting rooms, like your classroom, studying and learning our opponent," said Verner. "If we don't study, we'll fail our test on Sundays."
Verner spoke to the crowd about his journey to the NFL and that he started playing football at the age of 6. He credits his parents, keeping a positive frame of mind and living a healthy lifestyle for his success. Verner admits that he'd hear negative remarks about the possibility of him becoming a professional athlete and he'd use those comments as motivation to succeed. "I wanted to prove them wrong. I used anything negative as motivation to improve," said Verner.
After the assembly, 15 students were chosen by the school for their leadership, grades and behavior to be PLAY 60 Ambassadors and spend additional time with Verner for a meet and greet opportunity. The students were able to ask questions and were given an autographed poster and PLAY 60 materials. The school's administrators said the students greatly enjoyed the opportunity to meet Verner and be recognized as school leaders and appreciated the encouragement to lead a healthy lifestyle.
About "PLAY 60" Challenge
*The Titans "Play 60" initiative encourages youth to get at least sixty minutes of physical activity or play per day in effort to fight childhood obesity. Partnerships with local non-profit organizations, like the American Heart Association and the National Dairy Council, have enhanced this mission and opportunity to reach out to America's youth. Since the NFL's Play 60 inception, the NFL has committed over $100 million to youth health and fitness through programming, media time for public service announcements and grants from Titans Owner K.S. "Bud" Adams' Jr., and his fellow NFL owners and players. For more information about the NFL's Play 60 campaign please visit http://www.nflrush.com/health *
About the Southeast Dairy Association
On behalf of dairy farm families, the non-profit Southeast United Dairy Industry Association, Inc. (SUDIA), works with schools, health professionals, retailers, dairy processors and the public to promote dairy foods. For more information, visit www.southeastdairy.org