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|CHARLOTTE [url=http://www.officialoilers.com/authentic-adidas-ryan-strome-jersey]Ryan Strome Jersey[/url] , N.C. (AP) — A smiling David Tepper jogged down a small makeshift runway at a crowded gymnasium, crouching as he went to slap hands with wildly cheering elementary school children clad in blue Carolina Panthers T-shirts while music blared.
After finishing his short jog, the Panthers owner smiled back at the crowd and seemed to soak in the moment.
Tepper made his first charitable donation to the Carolinas on Tuesday through his foundation, giving away 12,000 new backpacks and school supplies to 17 elementary schools across the Charlotte, North Carolina, area including those students at Thomasboro Academy.
“It’s been great,” said a smiling Tepper of his first seven weeks as owner.
The self-made multi-billionaire hedge fund owner is 60, but still remembers his days growing up in Pittsburgh in a lower-income household. His mother worked as a teacher at an inner city school, and he got to see firsthand how difficult it was for her to provide school supplies for her students.
He also remembers walking to school with a brown bag because he didn’t have a backpack. In high school he would sometimes hitch rides to school.
When he purchased the Panthers for an NFL-record $2.2 billion from Jerry Richardson in July, Tepper said he immediately thought of supporting schoolchildren, calling them “our future.”
“I thought it was a great way to start off [url=http://www.officialflames.com/authentic-adidas-mark-giordano-jersey]Mark Giordano Jersey[/url] ,” said Tepper, who is known for his philanthropy in Pennsylvania and New Jersey.
“Every kid needs supplies and there is a shortage of supplies. Teachers don’t have enough money for supplies — and you know the situation in North Carolina and in the Carolinas in general with schools. So whatever we can do to help that out, it’s great.”
Said Panthers linebacker Thomas Davis: “He comes in here with that same mindset we have (as players) with giving back to the community.”
Tepper is quickly becoming a popular figure in the Charlotte area.
Unlike Richardson, who is more stoic and formal and kept out of the spotlight, Tepper exudes the feel of an ordinary guy, often dressing in khaki shorts, a golf shirt and a baseball hat.
Prior to the Panthers’ first preseason game, he tailgated with fans and knocked back a few beers.
“He’s easy to talk to, he’s approachable and he likes being around the guys,” Panthers linebacker Luke Kuechly said.
When he bought the Panthers, Tepper vowed to change the culture and make it more of a family atmosphere where people are comfortable in the workplace regardless of race, gender or religion.
That came after allegations surfaced of sexual and racial misconduct in the workplace by Richardson while owner of the Panthers. He was later fined $2.7 million by the NFL when reports were substantiated following a six-month investigation. The reports ultimately prompted Richardson [url=http://www.chicagobearsteamonline.com/danny-trevathan-jersey]Danny Trevathan Jersey[/url] , the team’s founder, to put the franchise up for sale.
Tepper is already shaking it up, doing things his way.
The Panthers have worn two different uniform combinations in their first two preseason home games and there’s talk of possibly incorporating a black helmet into the mix — a look Richardson would never go for.
Tepper is also expected to put the Panthers logo at midfield for the team’s first regular-season home game; Richardson always made sure the NFL shield was at midfield for more than two decades to honor the league.
Tepper wants to build an indoor/outdoor practice football facility in South Carolina, just over the border.
The Panthers have never had an indoor practice facility under Richardson.
Tepper hasn’t talked much about plans for a new stadium, but it’s something he’ll have to consider at some point as Bank of America — completed in 1995 — is now one of the older stadiums in the league.
Last week, Tepper hired Tom Glick as the team’s new president, saying he will bring a “new perspective” to the organization — with an eye toward bringing a Major League Soccer team to the Carolinas.
Glick has spent the past six years working with developing the City Football Group (CFG), a multi-national soccer organization that includes six clubs including current English Premier League champion Manchester City FC. The Group also owns New York City FC of Major League Soccer.
As chief commercial officer of CFG, Glick has experience working with soccer expansion, as well as building new stadiums and training centers.
When asked if that experience helped Glick land the job, Tepper replied, “it didn’t hurt.”
Tepper deflected other questions about business [url=http://www.dallascowboysteamonline.com/chidobe-awuzie-jersey]Chidobe Awuzie Jersey[/url] , saying he wanted this day to be about the kids.
“The first thing I did when I came down here is I said we have to do something like this in Charlotte,” Tepper said. “We are thinking something across the two states in the future. … It’s great stuff.”
And, he promised, only the beginning of his charitable ways in the Carolinas.
Kellen Moore is the new quarterbacks coach for the Dallas Cowboys after spending the previous three seasons as the backup to Tony Romo and then Dak Prescott.
Moore’s move is part of a significant overhaul to coach Jason Garrett’s staff. Although offensive coordinator Scott Linehan and defensive coordinator Rod Marinelli are returning, eight new coaches and two promotions were announced Friday.
Sanjay Lal, who has worked with receivers for four NFL teams over the past 11 seasons, is the new receivers coach in what could be a crucial year for 2014 All-Pro Dez Bryant’s future in Dallas. After spending last season with Indianapolis, Lal replaces Derek Dooley, who left to become offensive coordinator at Missouri.
The other newcomers are Paul Alexander (offensive line), Ken Amato (defensive assistant), Doug Colman (assistant special teams), Doug Nussmeier (tight ends) [url=http://www.chicagobearsteamonline.com/eddie-jackson-jersey]Eddie Jackson Jersey[/url] , Markus Paul (assistant strength) and Kris Richard (passing game coordinator/defensive backs).
Ben Bloom was promoted to linebackers coach, and former special teams assistant Keith O’Quinn will take over that unit.
The staff shake-up came after the Cowboys finished 9-7 in a season marred by 2016 All-Pro running back Ezekiel Elliott’s six-game suspension a year after Dallas had an NFC-best 13 wins.
The 29-year-old Moore spent six seasons in the NFL, the first three with Detroit as an undrafted free agent out of Boise State. He ended up as the backup in Dallas because of his ties to Linehan with the Lions.
Moore played just three regular-season games in his career, all of them after Romo broke his collarbone for the second time during the 2015 season and the Cowboys had benched both of Romo’s other backups, Brandon Weeden and Matt Cassel.
Moore likely would have started in 2016 when Romo broke his back in a preseason game, but Moore broke an ankle during practice in training camp.
The injury to Moore made Prescott the backup, and the former Mississippi State star went on to have one of the best rookie seasons for a quarterback in NFL history. Moore was Prescott’s trusted confidant as his backup last season.
The Cowboys gave the QB coaching job to Moore after deciding not to bring back Wade Wilson, who held the job for 11 seasons. Linehan also works closely with quarterbacks.
Matt Eberflus also was among the coaches who left the Dallas staff. The former linebackers coach and passing game coordinator agreed to become defensive coordinator for the Colts when they were planning to hire Josh McDaniels.
After McDaniels changed his mind and returned to New England, the Colts said they would honor the deals with the assistants who had agreed to come and hired new coach Frank Reich.
Former Dallas special teams coordinator Rich Bisaccia took the same job under Jon Gruden in Oakland. Alexander replaced Frank Pollack, the new offensive line coach in Cincinnati. Other coaches who didn’t return were Joe Baker (secondary) and Steve Loney, who retired after one season in charge of the tight ends.
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