Basketball player teaches kids life lesson through hoops - WSMV Channel 4

Pay It Forward

Kids learn life lessons on Murfreesboro basketball court

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There's a basketball program in Rutherford County where every child walks away a winner, no matter what the scoreboard says.

George Gibson said he was 16 years old when a family helped send him to a basketball camp. The act changed his life, and Gibson is now running camps of his own.

Gibson never forgot the act of kindness that gave him the chance to play.

"I got a chance to experience things that, had I not been on a basketball team, I never would have experienced," said Gibson.

That idea of paying it forward led Gibson to open the Above the Rim Gym in 2006 in Murfreesboro.

"We use basketball to help build character for our kids," said Gibson.

The organization's focus is to teach kids the game of basketball with some important life lessons along the way.

"It's given me good discipline, staying focused on the court and in school, being a team player, helping out," said eighth-grader Trenton Gibson.

"Understanding that there's more in sports than just the final score, we want kids to understand that even though you work hard, you practice hard, you may not be the winner on the scoreboard," said George Gibson.

The kids who visit the gym do more than just improve their hoops game.

"Coach has taught me a lot. He's made me a better player and a better person," said Trenton Gibson.

"(I listen) to my coach, as well as my teachers, and just apply what the coach is telling me in everyday life," said eighth-grader Dillon Whitaker.

"Everybody can't be a champion. We want to make champions out of kids. Every time they come into the gym, that's a win for everybody," said George Gibson.

Gibson says the gym is open for every kid from ages 7 to 17, and you don't have to be from Rutherford County to join.

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