Mastery Charter North football coach John Davidson

John Davidson remembers when his assistant coaches used the lights from their cars to allow the football team to practice in the evening.  Those days are over for the Mastery Charter North Pumas.  A new turf field with lights was unveiled during a ribbon-cutting ceremony at the school in the Germantown section of Philadelphia.  "I'm excited. I'm elated. This is one of the best things to ever happen to us. Our kids need it, the school needs it, our community needs it," Davidson told Paul Roberts of SV Sports.  Groundbreaking for the $4.5 million project took place last July.  It was completed at the end of November, sixty days ahead of schedule.  Davidson started the football program in 2011 with a grass field that had no fencing.  The girls flag football team and other athletes at the school will be able to use the new Sprinturf field.  "A space to go that's safe...and have a good time and build camaraderie and positive relationships that are gonna last a lifetime," replied Davidson.  Several school administrators, local government officials, and community members were at Thursday's event.  Philadelphia Eagles President Don Smolenski was also in attendance with Swoop the mascot.  The Eagles, through the NFL Foundation Grassroots program, have donated more than $4.1 million to 21 community-based field renovation projects including the one at Mastery Charter North.  Davidson also serves as the Assistant Principal of Culture and Athletic Director.  He's concerned with much more than what happens on the field.  "What are you going to do, who are you going to be when football ends? That's important to me, that they can become productive members of society," he said.

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