BURBANK — Coaching young athletes in a variety of sports for 30 years, Burbank Park, Recreation and Community Services coordinator Mike Graceffo has seen his share of talented athletes get derailed when they get to high school because they neglect their academics.
"Oh yeah, I've seen it happen many times, to good kids," said Graceffo, who also coached at the four local high schools in the past. "They just want to concentrate on sports and they don't take the time to put into their grades.
"I have had to sit guys from playing in the Burbank-Burroughs rivalry game in basketball because they didn't keep up their grades. It's sad to see that."
Because of those experiences, Graceffo makes sure that young players who attend his annual MVP Summer Basketball Camp get the message about maintaining their academics. So, along with the shooting and defensive drills that athletes took part in during the second of two camps this week, the youngsters were also informed about the value of academic preparation by Graceffo and his coaches.