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Leon Powe, University of California

[This was written by myself and frontpage writer "LeonPowe"]

It's certainly been a bit depressing here with all the football results recently. We felt it prudent to focus less on the teams as a whole and more on some of the individuals who comprise those teams. Even if our teams don't make the Final Four or the Rose Bowl, at least they can be filled with role models, right? Former Cal basketballer Leon Powe is one such young role model.

His youth seems to be a terrifying series of Dickensian disasters:

Powe grew up in Oakland, California. His father left him when he was two years old. When he was seven years old, the family's house burned down and they were homeless for years. They moved more than twenty times within six years. He and his siblings were taken away from their mother by the state of California and put into foster care. Powe's mother died four days before he played in the state championship.[1]

For most people, trying to deal with one of those calamities would be tough enough. However, for Leon Powe to handle all of them and make it to Cal is truly impressive. He helped raise and support his siblings all throughout his life, even including his time at Cal. Now, he helps give back to the community:

Former Oakland Tech, Cal and current NBA player Leon Powe will highlight a full summer of basketball events at Dream Courts in Hayward by presenting two youth camps and a Labor Day tournament.

On August 1-5 and August 8-12, the Memphis Grizzlies power forward who earned an NBA championship ring with the Boston Celtics in 2008, will present his "Powe Folks" camp.

Each of the camps, for boys and girls ages 6-up, will be an intensive five-day experience in which participants will be put through a variety of skills and drills by Powe and under the direction of well known Northern California basketball coach Lou Richie.

"I’m doing this for the kids because I want to give something back to the kids," Powe said.

It's great to see former NBA champion and Cal standard bearer Leon Powe trying to improve the lot of children in the East Bay. Basketball helped him overcome many of the challenges in his young life. Perhaps basketball can similarly help some of the children attending his camp overcome problems in their life! Maybe basketball helped you overcome some problem in your life!

Powe went on to dominate the Pac-10, being voted Freshman of the year and leading the conference in rebounding. After suffering another setback with a second torn ACL, Powe came back his junior year, and averaged 20.5 PPG and 10.1 RPG, leading the Bears to the NCAA tourney and a 20-11 record.

In conclusion, buy foreign.

--------THIS IS THE POST SCRIPT ------------ To see the rest of the Buick Human Highlight Reel, and even share a story of your own, go to This post is sponsored by Buick.