The Carolina Panthers have awarded the South Carolina Football Coaches Association (SCFCA) a $30,000 grant to support the NFL and USA Football's Heads Up Football initiative. The grant will fund training and certification for 1,200 South Carolina high school football coaches.
Heads Up Football is a comprehensive player safety program that addresses proper equipment fitting, heat and hydration, concussion recognition and awareness, and tackling fundamentals. The grant was awarded during the SCFCA 2015 Annual Meetings.
"The SCFCA is a leader in promoting safety for its schools and student-athletes," said Riley Fields, the Carolina Panthers director of community relations. "The Panthers share similar values and are committed to enhancing player health and safety at the youth and high school levels. We are pleased to partner with the SCFCA to provide new opportunities for high school coaches who teach the fundamentals of football at the prep level."
SCFCA treasurer Mike Ware said, "The SCFCA appreciates the gift of $30,000 to provide our coaches and players proper education and training through USA Football's Heads Up Football program. The Heads Up Football program helps make football at the grassroots better and safer. We're proud to be a partner with the Panthers in making our game better."
Since its debut in 2011, the Heads Up Football program has been adopted by more than 5,600 youth athletic associations nationwide, which is 60 percent of the known youth football universe. During the past two seasons, more than 1,000 high schools nationally have enrolled in the program. In 2015 alone, the Greenville County Public School System and 26 other high schools in South Carolina joined the Heads Up Football program.