Youth Football Coach Gives 10-Year-Old Players $44K Worth Of High-Profile, Rare Sneakers

The Crenshaw Cougars youth football team is going to have all eyes on them. Not just for their play on the field, but also their style.

All 33 players of the 10-year-old and younger Los Angeles team were gifted quite the surprise yesterday, when they received brand new sneakers from “Cool Kicks,” a local L.A. store. But these weren’t just your regular kind of kicks. No, these were some of the rarest and most expensive kinds. According to the receipts, some kids received Jordan 1’s, Brooklyn Off-White Air Force 1’s and other high profile shoes.

Some of the sneakers cost anywhere from a few hundred dollars to a couple grand.

The total? Over $44,000! For sneakers. Unreal.

Receipt of some of the total charges from the sneakers that were given to the Crenshaw Cougars football team. (TMZ )


The kids were gifted the sneakers by their coach “Big U,” who is also a community leader that runs Developing Options, a non-profit aimed at helping kids stay away from gangs and crime.

Now I don’t want to disparage or be “that guy” regarding this story.

I think it’s awesome that possible vulnerable children that may be susceptible to joining gangs or getting into trouble are choosing not to go towards that lifestyle. They’re also 10-year-olds. When I was young I used to think video games and Starting Lineup figurines were the coolest thing in the world.

In addition, the sneaker craze is absolutely mammoth these days. Limited edition shoes go for a ton of money. Even Washington Commanders Taylor Heinicke recently showed off his new kicks to reporters; he buys new shoes every time he gets a win on the field.

But I just feel like $45,000 could have been used for something better for the kids.

Crenshaw Cougars football team received limited edition and expensive sneakers from part of a local community group. (TMZ)

First off, they’re at the age that they’re going to grow out of them pretty soon.

Also, if they are in a rough neighborhood, the last thing you want to do is put their safety in question by possibly making them a target to get the new shoes stolen – especially if they’re worth thousands of dollars.

Regardless, it’s still an awesome thing that the coach and the local community leaders did for the kids. Anything that can incentivize staying in school and focusing on one’s talent, in this case football, is awesome.

So job well done all around. And hopefully the kids don’t wear the sneakers on the field after it rains!

Written by Mike Gunzelman

Mike “Gunz” Gunzelman has been involved in the sports and media industry for over a decade. He’s also a risk taker - the first time he ever had sushi was from a Duane Reade in Penn Station in NYC.


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  1. How about taking the money for the shoes and pay the kids for getting good grades? That might keep them in school.
    A lot of drop outs have fancy sneakers. I hope these kids don’t get rolled for their new kicks.

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