Madkin Still Barking the Signals

Wayne Madkin made a name for himself in Starkille as Mississippi State's All-Time winningest quarterback. With berths in the Southeastern Conference's Championship game, the Cotton Bowl, the Peach Bowl and the Independence Bowl, Madkin knows a thing or two about winning.

Now that his playing days are behind him, Wayne is giving back to his community by trying to help young people win at the game of life.

"We are setting up a non-profit organization called the Signal Caller foundation," explained Madkin. "Basically we are going to focus on middle school and high school student athletes. Our goals are to teach them financial literacy, public speaking and public relations. We want to help groom them for their future."

"These days you see a lot of student athletes in the media and it's negative publicity," said Wayne. "What we are trying to do is take more of a grass roots approach to things and invest some time with these student athletes. We want them to realize from an early age that there is life after football and they need to be prepared for it."

The former Bulldog is not alone in his pursuit to sow some positive seeds in the lives of young people. He was able to recruit other college players and former teammates.

"It's mainly me and some other guys I played ball with," explained Madkin. "I have former teammates and some friends from Huntsville, Alabama that played at Auburn and Louisville working with me. The main thing we were looking for was former athletes who graduated from college, were doing well in their chosen profession and have a heart for young people. Our mission is to prepare these student athletes for the next level and beyond."

The Signal Caller Foundation is still in the process of putting things together, but interested parties will soon be able to get more information about the foundation on-line.

"Our website is SignalCaller.org," said Madkin. "We are working on the site right now. It should be up within two to three weeks. Right now we are finalizing the paperwork for our non-profit status. All donations will be tax deductable."

Signal Caller is taking root in north Alabama, but Madkin expects to branch into Mississippi in the not so distant future.

"We are focusing right now on North Alabama," said Wayne. "I am from Huntsville, so we are starting here and then we plan on going into the Birmingham area. Once we get our system in place, I want to move into the state of Mississippi."

Madkin explains that the organization needs your help. Donations are welcome, but there is room for other volunteers to get involved.

"Interested parties can make donations, but if people want to get involved they can contact me personally," said Wayne. "If they want to volunteer to help me, I welcome the help. If someone wants to help us get started in Mississippi we would be happy about that. I am anxious to get it going in Mississippi because I have some contacts there and I played there. Some of the kids there know me because of my playing days. If anyone wants to get involved we can find a place for them to help."

The former Bulldog quarterback believes the Signal Caller Foundation is something that needed to be created.

"I just really see a need in our young people," said Madkin. "I turn on the TV everyday and I see athletes misrepresenting themselves, their community, their school and their family. I think some of that can be stopped at an early age. I am now a father myself, so I am looking at life a little differently. There are some athletes out there that I wouldn't want my children picking as a role model. Let's take a pro-active approach to things and not just sit and complain about it."

"One other thing that I see is that our public school systems are not really educating young people on the financial side of life like they should. In our country the average savings account is in the negative. A lot of people are not financially literate. They don't understand how important it is to maintain their bills or how a credit card works or budgeting and things like that. I see a big need there."

Wayne explains that a lot of life's lessons are not taught on the football field.

"I just see a big need for our young people," explained Madkin. "There is a need for accountability. There is a need for more David Robinsons and Tom Bradys in sports. There is a need for more positive role models. Guys like that will have a career after sports because of how they carry themselves and how they present themselves in front of people. Our young people should be taught those lessons early."

For people interested in donating time or resources you can contact Wayne Madkin directly at WMadkin@signalcaller.org.


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