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Simmons Got Game Written by Jessica Cogan Photographed by Angelo Rivera Russell Simmons On January 13, Scholar Baller and Rush Philanthropic hosted a special screening of Coach Carter, the film based on the true story of a high school’s controversial basketball coach. Starring Samuel L. Jackson, Coach Carter centers on a coach at a low-performing city school who benches his entire team for poor academic performance. The film is an inspirational account of overcoming disadvantages and persevering against the odds. Rap mogul Russell Simmons braved the icy night as a representative of Rush Philanthropic Arts Foundation, an organization Russell and brothers Danny and Joseph founded in 1995. Rush Philanthropic is dedicated to granting disadvantaged urban youth access to the arts. The organization funds more than 70 New York City youth organizations.

Co-sponsoring the night’s screening was Scholar-Baller, a non-profit committed to inspiring youth to excel academically through the cultural power of sports and entertainment. Also on hand was WNBA phenom Debra Taurasi, showing her support of the night’s events. Coach Carter is currently playing at theaters nationwide. Check local listings for details.

Simmons Got Game