Daily Sports Smile: Buccaneers star Mike Evans provides scholarships to local students
Tampa Bay Buccaneers receiver Mike Evans gave back to local youth this week. Through his foundation, Evans presented six East Tampa students with a college scholarship. Each student received a Florida Prepaid four-year scholarship, valued at $23,500, and was recognized at a Buccaneers home game.
Evans partnered with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers Foundation Social Justice Fund and AdventHealth to present the students the special honor. The heartwarming gesture was a part of his Catch for Christmas Scholarship program.
“I want kids to know that if they work hard, they will be rewarded,” Evans told the Hillsborough Education Foundation. “If I didn’t get a scholarship for football, I probably wouldn’t have been able to go to college, so it means a lot to be able to make a difference like this.”
Evans also donated over $30,000 to local youth in need. This month, he provided gifts to kids at the Boys and Girls Clubs of Tampa Bay. He also took 13 kids from the Children’s Home Network on a holiday shopping spree. The local organization helps at-risk children and families.
The NFL Players Association (NFLPA) recognized Evans for his strong community work. Evans was named the Week 16 NFLPA Community MVP. The NFLPA will make a special $10,000 contribution to a charity of his choice.
"This is a huge honor," Evans said after receiving the award. "With the many blessings I've received through football, my wife, Ashli, and I started the Mike Evans Family Foundation to be a blessing to others. We don't do it for the recognition. It just makes us feel good to give back."
The Tampa Bay Buccaneers also honored Evans. He was selected as the organization's 2021 Walter Payton NFL Man of the Year nominee. He is one of 32 players recognized by the league for outstanding community efforts. Evans will wear a special helmet decal and have a chance to win the award at the end of the season.
This season, Evans has appeared in 14 games with the Buccaneers. He has 64 receptions for 899 yards and 11 touchdowns.