Columbia man is helping make extracurricular sports affordable

1 year 6 months 3 weeks ago Wednesday, February 27 2019 Feb 27, 2019 Wednesday, February 27, 2019 5:00:00 PM CST February 27, 2019 in News
By: Shoshana Dubnow, KOMU 8 Reporter
loading

COLUMBIA - Anthony Johnson has lived in Columbia his whole life. During his childhood, he didn’t have the chance to play sports after school.

“I was one of the underserved kids growing up,” Johnson said. “I missed out on so many opportunities and experiences.”

He said his single mother couldn’t afford for him to participate in extracurriculars. His goal now is for Columbia’s youth to have the opportunity he never had. He founded Columbia Supreme last September. The league specifically gives underprivileged girls a chance to be on a basketball team.

“This is the exact program I wish I would have existed when I was growing up,” Johnson said.

Before Columbia Supreme existed, Johnson stepped in during a coaching change for his nephew’s basketball team. The team started doing better in terms of their record and their attitudes. That’s when Johnson said he realized half of the picture was missing.

“I had a couple people say, ‘I wish some of the girls had the same opportunity,” Johnson said. “I knew there was a barrier because there weren’t a lot of teams for them to play on, and then I also saw a lot of people just couldn’t afford it. I just tried to figure out a way I could help with that.”

Being on the team costs $500 for an entire year, which Johnson said is cheaper than the majority of other basketball teams for just one semester. The Day Dreams Foundation also helps many girls with half of the cost.

“We have to be here for the kids,” said Rashekii Howard, Columbia Supreme’s assistant director. “There’s a lot of coaches and stuff that are in this for the money. That’s not what we do. We’re in it to make the kids better.”

Howard used to run her own girls’ basketball league, but it didn’t attract as many players as she hoped. She knew Johnson through the basketball circuit. When he asked her to help him start Columbia Supreme, she said it was his character that convinced her to accept the offer.

“He had tryouts, and he had an overwhelming number of kids to come,” Howard said. “That’s just his presence in the community. He had all of the characteristics I was looking for, and it was like a no-brainer when he asked me to come and join him.”

Columbia Supreme has grown to have four girls teams with players ranging in age from elementary school through high school. One player said she looks up to Anthony not only as a coach, but also as a role model in life.

“He gives advice on how to get better,” said Ealynne Bostick, a player on the third-grade team. “I want to be good like him and do everything like him.”

Johnson said the lessons learned within Columbia Supreme extend beyond the basketball court.

“The kids just love it,” Johnson said. “They can’t wait to come to practice. They’ll call me on their days off. It’s just really rewarding for them, whether they want to learn to get better at basketball or they just don’t have anybody.”

Johnson said Columbia Supreme is a group effort, and he hopes to continue letting more girls into the league.

“I think it’s important like with any aspect in life, we don’t just say it, but we show that girls are capable of achieving anything just like boys are,” Johnson said.

Columbia Supreme practices several times during the week and travels to tournaments on the weekends. Johnson said he tries to help the players with everything from uniforms to rides. If you'd like to support Columbia Supreme, visit their website.

More News

Grid
List
TERRE HAUTE, Ind. (AP) — The U.S. government has put the first Black inmate to death since the Trump administration... More >>
6 hours ago Thursday, September 24 2020 Sep 24, 2020 Thursday, September 24, 2020 9:02:53 PM CDT September 24, 2020 in News
COLUMBIA - Some CPS parents and special needs advocates said CPS hasn't fully complied with Individualized Education Program (IEP) guidelines.... More >>
6 hours ago Thursday, September 24 2020 Sep 24, 2020 Thursday, September 24, 2020 8:39:00 PM CDT September 24, 2020 in News
COLUMBIA – The circuit court system has had to make some major adjustments in the last few months to meet... More >>
6 hours ago Thursday, September 24 2020 Sep 24, 2020 Thursday, September 24, 2020 8:38:00 PM CDT September 24, 2020 in News
JEFFERSON CITY - Governor Parson said he and his wife Teresa are fine after their positive COVID-19 test results Wednesday.... More >>
8 hours ago Thursday, September 24 2020 Sep 24, 2020 Thursday, September 24, 2020 7:00:00 PM CDT September 24, 2020 in News
COLUMBIA - Missouri Senator Josh Hawley, R, discussed the open Supreme Court seat and the possible next stimulus package with... More >>
8 hours ago Thursday, September 24 2020 Sep 24, 2020 Thursday, September 24, 2020 6:51:00 PM CDT September 24, 2020 in News
JEFFERSON CITY - Missouri Governor Mike Parson signed Executive Order 20-17, activating the Missouri National Guard Thursday afternoon. The... More >>
8 hours ago Thursday, September 24 2020 Sep 24, 2020 Thursday, September 24, 2020 6:33:00 PM CDT September 24, 2020 in News
COLUMBIA - At Thursday's UM System Board of Curators meeting, UM President and MU Chancellor Mun Choi said the university's... More >>
9 hours ago Thursday, September 24 2020 Sep 24, 2020 Thursday, September 24, 2020 5:57:00 PM CDT September 24, 2020 in News
COLUMBIA - The Columbia Police Department is taking a different approach to solving the 2019 investigation involving the remains of... More >>
9 hours ago Thursday, September 24 2020 Sep 24, 2020 Thursday, September 24, 2020 5:52:00 PM CDT September 24, 2020 in News
JEFFERSON CITY - Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services revised its guidelines for long-term care facilities that choose to... More >>
9 hours ago Thursday, September 24 2020 Sep 24, 2020 Thursday, September 24, 2020 5:19:00 PM CDT September 24, 2020 in News
COLUMBIA - Columbia and Boone County Public Health and Senior Services officials said they have seen a decrease in demand... More >>
10 hours ago Thursday, September 24 2020 Sep 24, 2020 Thursday, September 24, 2020 4:59:00 PM CDT September 24, 2020 in News
ALTON, Mo. (AP) — A judge has ordered Missouri to sell part of nearly 4,200 acres of land it bought... More >>
11 hours ago Thursday, September 24 2020 Sep 24, 2020 Thursday, September 24, 2020 3:28:00 PM CDT September 24, 2020 in News
COLUMBIA- Columbia police were dispatched to Passions Adult Boutique Thursday around 12:05 a.m. after a suspect demanded money while displaying... More >>
11 hours ago Thursday, September 24 2020 Sep 24, 2020 Thursday, September 24, 2020 3:14:00 PM CDT September 24, 2020 in News
JEFFERSON CITY- Two additional individuals have been arrested for their role in the May 2017 homicide. During the 2017... More >>
13 hours ago Thursday, September 24 2020 Sep 24, 2020 Thursday, September 24, 2020 1:47:00 PM CDT September 24, 2020 in News
COLUMBIA- The UM Board of Curators voted to name the new center for Race, Citizenship and Justice after former interim... More >>
13 hours ago Thursday, September 24 2020 Sep 24, 2020 Thursday, September 24, 2020 1:21:00 PM CDT September 24, 2020 in News
(AP)- Hospitals in Missouri’s third-largest city are approaching capacity due to a continuing surge of coronavirus cases. The Springfield... More >>
14 hours ago Thursday, September 24 2020 Sep 24, 2020 Thursday, September 24, 2020 12:43:00 PM CDT September 24, 2020 in News
(AP)- Kansas City Royals outfielder Alex Gordon says he will retire after the season. The player who spent his... More >>
14 hours ago Thursday, September 24 2020 Sep 24, 2020 Thursday, September 24, 2020 12:14:00 PM CDT September 24, 2020 in News
(AP)- With bars and nightclubs limiting capacity and closing early in the St. Louis area due to the coronavirus pandemic,... More >>
15 hours ago Thursday, September 24 2020 Sep 24, 2020 Thursday, September 24, 2020 11:20:00 AM CDT September 24, 2020 in News
COLUMBIA - Some Columbia Public Schools students may return to in-person learning by mid-October. CPS Superintendent Dr. Peter Stiepleman... More >>
16 hours ago Thursday, September 24 2020 Sep 24, 2020 Thursday, September 24, 2020 11:02:00 AM CDT September 24, 2020 in News
Columbia, MO
Broken Clouds 57°
4am 59°
5am 58°
6am 57°
7am 56°