Release: Born Ready Project Makes Stop Where Len Bias Learned Basketball

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Xtreme Teens Speech Set for Columbia Park Recreation Center

Teens in Prince George’s County will soon have a chance to learn about the rich legacy of Len Bias where he learned how to play basketball.  A Born Ready Project speech for the Xtreme Teens program in Prince George’s County, MD, will take place at the Columbia Park Recreation Center on February 7. It’s at that center where Bias, the former University of Maryland basketball star, developed his game while a teenager.

Dave Ungrady, author of the book, Born Ready: The Mixed Legacy of Len Bias  and developer of the Born Ready Project, will speak about decision making to members of the Xtreme Teens Program. The speech begins at 8 p.m.

Bias grew up in Columbia Park a few blocks from the recreation center and started playing basketball there while in middle school. Bias famously was not selected for his middle school team twice, and he used those disappointments as motivation to become a dominant player.

“When he was young, kids used to laugh at him when he played basketball,” says Lee Madkins, the director of the Columbia Park Recreation Center during Bias’s youth. “They never picked him on a team. Then he ended up with everyone wanting him on their team.”

During the speech, the teens will learn leadership tools that help them increase their confidence in decision making. These lessons are drawn from the legacy of Bias, whose choices resulted in superb athletic performances on the court but tragic consequences off the court, when he died of a cocaine overdose in 1986.

The speech is one of six scheduled for Xtreme Teens through March at MNCPPC facilities. They began in early January. Xtreme Teens, managed by the Maryland National Capital Park and Planning Commission, provides programs, classes, facilities and other fun things to do for teens ages 13-17 and pre-teens 10-12 in Prince Georges County.

The Born Ready Project helps teenagers and adults achieve their greatness, by teaching them life skills and leadership skills to make good decisions and act resilient. Decision making and resilience are important to achieving success.

For more information about the Born Ready Project, contact Dave Ungrady, djungrady27@gmail.com or 703-282-5259. For more information about Xtreme Teens, contact Stephen Makle, Stephen.Makle@pgparks.com or 301-446-3408.

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