Snoop Dogg’s South Central Los Angeles-based youth football league is expanding to Chicago.
The West Coast rapper-actor will kick off plans Friday to set up local operations of the Snoop Youth Football League at a free football clinic for about 200 8- to 14-year-old boys from Chicago Housing Authority families. He’ll also distribute book bags and school supplies to 600 children at a Windows of Opportunity Inc. Back to School event.
Chicago is the first city outside of California to get league teams.
The five-year-old league has about 2,500 players on 12 teams.
A Pittsburgh Steelers fan and former high school quarterback, Snoop invested $1 million to start the program in 2005. He has since put in about $300,000 into the league, which charges less per player than Pop Warner teams and opens participation to parents with criminal records. Snoop, whose legal name is Calvin Broadus, has coached his son’s youth and high school football teams.
The league is credited with helping the program turn around at Crenshaw High School in Los Angeles. Last fall, the school’s team, with 10 former league players on the squad, played for the state championship.
Chicago teams will see league action next year.
Snoop, his league commissioner and a team coach will join former Chicago Bears players at the clinic.
‘This allows them to see the artist giving back to the community and also introduces them to sports,’ said Crystal Brown Black, executive director of Windows of Opportunity, CHA’s nonprofit affiliate. ‘Their ability to go onto a field and learn techniques in football is kind of a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity.’