Two UGA Football Players Attend All Pro Dad Event To Support Kid Whose Father Is Deployed

(Getty Images/AJC)

University of Georgia star wide receivers Adonai “A.D.” Mitchell and Marcus Rosemy-Jacksaint attended an All Pro Dad breakfast in Bogart, Georgia, to support Jaxon Parker, whose father has been deployed with the U.S. Army Reserve.

“They said that Jaxon’s father deployed and that he didn’t really have anybody to sit with and eat this morning at a dad-type event,” said Mitchell, who caught the go-ahead touchdown against Alabama in the National Championship Game in Indianapolis. “So, me and Mark came just to support him, really. We just sat there and talked, being friends with him, stuff like that.”

It is not uncommon for athletes at major universities to get involved in community-based initiatives. It serves two purposes. The athlete and the university are of service to the local community and their presence at public events generates interest in university athletics.

Georgia won the national title in January and are immensely popular in the state.

Thursday’s breakfast was organized by Jaxon’s uncle, Elliott Rogers, who is the longtime facilitator of that group.

Rogers reached out to Georgia football to see if a Bulldogs football player would be available to sit in with his nephew for the breakfast. When head coach Kirby Smart got word, he identified the players on his roster that he wanted to participate.

“Didn’t mind at all,” Rosemy-Jacksaint, rising junior wide receiver, said of rising at 6 a.m. on an otherwise off day. “We love doing these type of things.”

All Pro Dad is a fatherhood program of Family First, a national nonprofit organization based in Tampa, Florida. Former NFL coach Tony Dungy is a founder, and former Georgia coach Mark Richt was a major proponent and participant.

Dungy’s All Pro Dad program’s intentions are good. But the former NFL head coach, despite all the good he’s done, is fundamentally rooted in respectability politics. That is problematic.

Dungy was at a news conference earlier this month when a new bill was signed into law in Florida by Gov. Ron DeSantis that will provide $70 million in funding to various programs that address fatherhood, including things like mentorship programs for at-risk youth and services that will give fathers the necessary resources to handle their child support responsibilities.

“I asked [Abe Brown], how do those young boys (19, 20, 21) get [in prison]? And he told me it’s not socio-economic, it’s not racial, it’s not education, it’s none of that,” Dungy said at the press conference. “Ninety-five percent of these boys did not grow up with their dad.”

Dungy trafficks in the dissemination of false messaging around Black and brown communities, and standing up at a news conference with DeSantis?

The Florida governor is a highly controversial politician that pushes agendas that don’t seem to align with true Christian values, the values Dungy adheres to.

Mitchell was the Bulldogs’ third-leading receiver this past season with 29 catches for 426 yards and four touchdowns.

Rosemy-Jacksaint has battled through injuries to play in 19 games the past two seasons, including five starts. He had seven catches for 94 yards last season.