DURHAM, N.C. – With the 2014 Duke baseball campaign less than a month away, head coach Chris Pollard stepped away from the baseball diamond this week to visit Crain’s Creek Middle School in Carthage, N.C. The Blue Devils’ second-year head coach took part in the school’s Ticket to Reading Rewards Kickoff Rally, discussing the importance of reading with more than 400 middle school students.
“Why do I support this reading program? Because it will change your life,” said Pollard. “The challenge presented to the students at Crain’s Creek is to take advantage of the opportunity the Ticket to Reading Rewards program provides. Through this program, there is the chance to develop reading habits that will benefit these students throughout their academic careers and beyond.”
In his address, Pollard challenged the Crain’s Creek students to fully commit to reading, laying the foundation for future academic success.
“To quote Thomas Edison, ‘Opportunity is missed by most people because it is dressed in overalls and looks like work,’” Pollard told the students. “When students come to Duke University, they have to do a lot of reading in their classes. We expect our student-athletes to keep up with all their assignments.”
The Ticket to Reading Rewards program, founded in 2002 by the National Association of Basketball Coaches (NABC) Foundation, is a reading program that encourages middle school students to read books outside the classroom and obtain awards for reading. 2013-14 marks the first year Crain’s Creek has participated in the program.