College football can have an undeniably positive impact on the lives of athletes who grew up in difficult environments.
Here's what some current and former college football people had to say about the life-changing impact the game can have.
Former Oklahoma State coach Pat Jones: “It's rewarding for all of them to make it, but when you get a kid that's been fighting an uphill battle through no reason of his own doing, it's one of the most rewarding parts of coaching.”
Former Kansas coach Mark Mangino: “Every time I think about a game I lost, I think about the Darrell Stuckeys of the world and it makes me smile.”
Oklahoma co-offensive coordinator Jay Norvell: “As they grow from 18 to 22, they really become mature men. They leave with ideas and thoughts and things that will put them on a compass for the rest of their lives.
“You can really affect a guy coming from a tough background into a college environment. They learn how to grow, they learn how to be mature, they learn how to handle their business academically.”
Oklahoma State running backs coach Jemal Singleton: “It's a different environment than maybe it was 10-15 years ago. You're looking at a society that has slowly but surely become known as a fatherless society.
“That young man's going to require a little more attention with things like trust and mutual respect. So I think as a coach, if you're out recruiting young men that come from a different background, then you've got to be ready and prepared to give them support on your campus.”
Former Kansas safety Darrell Stuckey, now with the San Diego Chargers: “I think it gives you a sense of belonging. A sense of togetherness, and with the right coaching, a sense of discipline and encouragement. It teaches you character along the way and how to work well with others.
“It gives you a head start in life, or an escape from your current situation. It allows you to surge yourself forward in life ... to earn that scholarship and make it where you don't have to go back where you came from.”
Former Oklahoma coach Barry Switzer: “Those are the things that the sport brings. It's a safety net for so many young kids.
“Coaches find those players in any place, in any nook and cranny in our country that plays our sport. It's up to that individual to take advantage of that opportunity.”