NFL Vet Bart Scott Part of Financial Literacy Session for Jayhawks

LAWRENCE, Kan. – NFL Pro Bowl linebacker Bart Scott can’t take back the time he paid nearly $6,000 for an authentic fox fur coat, but he is using the experience to help fellow athletes make sound financial decisions. The 11-year league veteran was part of a team of educators from the Morgan Stanley Global Sports and Entertainment (GSE) Financial Education Program that presented to more than 100 Kansas student-athletes in conjunction with KU Leads Tuesday evening.

Scott, an undrafted free agent out of Southern Illinois University who earned Pro Bowl honors in 2006 with the Baltimore Ravens, teamed with Aaron Harding, a certified financial planner and financial educator, to deliver a pair of hour-long presentations urging current Kansas Jayhawks to have a plan and budget.

“It’s all about preparation, all athletes are about preparation, we’re all coachable,” Scott said after the first session with Kansas football. “I tell them to have a plan because when you don’t have a plan, things fall through the cracks. I tell them to have financial plan and a goal because that’s how we’re programmed to think. We set a goal and achieve it. Set a financial goal and try to achieve it as well, understanding what goes into that.”

The Morgan Stanley GSE Financial Education Program, announced in November 2014, is a tailored financial literacy initiative dedicated to educating and empowering athletes and entertainers at all levels to help them make smart decisions and take control of their financial futures. The program features important educational information along with real conversations with former professional athletes, allowing the course to resonate in an authentic manner without the use of complex theories, jargon or sales pitches.

Opening slides declared “success starts with education” and student-athletes were shown part of a cautionary documentary about former NBA star Antoine Walker’s financial missteps. Walker, who was not in attendance Tuesday, is also a Morgan Stanley GSE consultant and is not alone, as the presentation claimed that 85 percent of all professional athletes are broke three years after retirement.

Throughout the event, audience members participated in interactive learning activities, including a financial priorities ranking, benefits and consequences of lifestyle selections, a role play highlighting the difficulty of telling friends and family no, and a credit quiz challenge, which was won by the offensive team in the Kansas football session.

“I’ve learned a little bit about this stuff because I’m a business minor and I’ve taken some finance, accounting and management classes, so kind of a review from what I’ve been learning,” Kansas quarterback Montell Cozart said. “It was great, I feel like everyone needed it. We always hear about (pro players) going bankrupt and you wonder how they can do that when they have those max deals.”

Scott took time at the end of both sessions for a personal message about how he overcame the odds and has benefitted from hard work and making good decisions.

“Being able to have this knowledge early,” Cozart said, “if I’m blessed enough to get to that position, I’ll be able to have an upper hand on it a little bit.”

And perhaps not choose a frivolous fox fur. The official online source for Kansas Athletics, Williams Education Fund contributions, tickets, merchandise, multimedia, photos and much, much more.