Louisa students design cleats for NFL hometown hero

Published: Dec. 2, 2022 at 2:47 PM EST
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LOUISA COUNTY, Va. (WVIR) - Creative minds are at work. Louisa County students are creating the artwork for cleats that’ll be worn by one of their hometown heroes.

Louisa County’s Brandon Smith is in his rookie season with the Carolina Panthers. He will take part in an NFL program called “My Cause, My Cleats,” which allows its players to express themselves with their footwear in week 13 of the season, revealing passions and causes close to them.

Smith’s cause is simple: kindness.

“He said, ‘I want my cause to go towards kindness in my community,’ and we thought that was something special. He said, ‘I want the students to design my cleats that I’m gonna wear if you’re all about it,’ and certainly we were all about it,” LCPS Superintendent Doug Straley said.

“Now that I’m on an elevated platform I just wanted to take this resource and give back the best possible way that I can,” Smith said.

Louisa County’s best art students from all six of its schools came up with the designs.

“Fist bump and the two helmets the bigger one and the smaller one. Sportsmanship, the theme was kindness, so sportsmanship,” middle-schooler Sarah Harris said.

“I chose the heart because of kindness. In schools, kindness is really important to help each other out,” middle-schooler Chase Freeman said.

“This rally for kindness is all about anti-bullying and being good to others. and Brandon really wanted to be a part of that,” Straley said.

When the cleats are done, they’ll be mailed to Smith in Charlotte

“Wearing those cleats and not only letting those kids show out their movement on kindness, but also show off their artistic qualities too,” Smith said. “I can’t wait. I’m going to make a blog on it and promote those kids as well and promote the cause even more. I can’t wait to see it.”

Players will have the option to donate their cleats to NFL auction, where proceeds can go to whatever causes they choose.

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