Mon­crief set to speak at EHS Aca­demic Sign­ing Day

El Dorado News-Times - - In Our Schools -

The 12th An­nual Aca­demic Sign­ing Day for El Do­rado Prom­ise re­cip­i­ents at El Do­rado High School will take place on Wed­nes­day at 1:30 p.m. at Wild­cat Arena. Sid­ney Mon­crief, for­mer Arkansas Ra­zor­back All-Amer­i­can, five-time NBA All Star and two-time NBA De­fen­sive Player of the Year, will be the key­note speaker.

Mon­crief was a vi­tal part of the South­west-Con­fer­ence-win­ning Ra­zor­backs men’s bas­ket­ball team in 1977, who also earned a Fi­nal Four ap­pear­ance in 1978. He held the all-time lead­ing scor­ing record with the Univer­sity of Arkansas for years. As fifth-over­all NBA draft pick, Mon­crief joined the Mil­wau­kee Bucks in 1979, re­tir­ing his jer­sey in 1990. Mon­crief is a five-time mem­ber of the NBA All-De­fen­sive team, and an NBA Al­lPro. He is a for­mer NCAA Divi­sion I head coach (UALR) and NBA as­sis­tant coach (Dal­las Mav­er­icks, Golden State War­riors, Mil­wau­kee Bucks). Mon­crief also led an in­ter­na­tional team as head con­sul­tant in Bei­jing, China. He has served on the board of di­rec­tors for a For­tune 500 com­pany and as pres­i­dent of var­i­ous re­tail auto deal­er­ships. He is the au­thor of six books. One of pro bas­ket­ball’s hard­est-work­ing and best-liked play­ers, the state news­pa­per called him “the most beloved ath­lete in the his­tory of Arkansas.”

Mon­crief was born to a sin­gle mother to a fam­ily of seven, in a hous­ing project in Lit­tle Rock. His mother was a clean­ing woman who made sure he com­pleted chores and held mem­ber­ship in a Boy Scout troop. “I had to do things right. As tired as she was, she al­ways took time for dis­ci­pline,” he told Sports Il­lus­trated.

While a se­nior at Hall High School, he earned a 3.8 GPA to qual­ify for a schol­ar­ship, and earned a Bach­e­lor’s de­gree at the Univer­sity of Arkansas. Early in his pro­fes­sion, he was told of a de­gen­er­a­tive knee prob­lem which a doc­tor said would limit his bas­ket­ball ca­reer to two years. He played eleven years.

He leads One Team — a Texas-based, peo­ple de­vel­op­ment com­pany, be­gun in 2003, that helps youth and adults by of­fer­ing unique and in­no­va­tive high-per­for­mance so­lu­tions.

“For stu­dents, Mr. Mon­crief’s mis­sion is to en­cour­age aca­demic per­for­mance, by teach­ing lead­er­ship, team­work, and other skills,” said El Do­rado High School Prin­ci­pal Alva Reibe. “He is a leg­end in Arkansas. We will be thrilled to learn more about his ed­u­ca­tional life lessons.”

This year marks the 11th an­niver­sary of the El Do­rado Prom­ise, a $50 mil­lion schol­ar­ship pro­gram funded en­tirely by Mur­phy Oil Cor­po­ra­tion for EHS grad­u­ates. Since it be­gan, the Prom­ise has pro­vided fund­ing to more than 2,200 EHS grad­u­ates, at­tend­ing 138 col­leges and uni­ver­si­ties in 31 dif­fer­ent states. Prom­ise Schol­ars have com­pleted stud­ies from most Arkansas pub­lic and pri­vate uni­ver­si­ties, as well as 39 out-of-state in­sti­tu­tions. Cur­rently, they are at­tend­ing 73 dif­fer­ent col­leges. Over 85 per­cent of EHS grad­u­ates go on to at­tend col­lege and 75 per­cent of those re­turn to col­lege af­ter their fresh­men year, far above state and na­tional col­lege-go­ing and re­ten­tion rates.

Aca­demic Sign­ing Day’s ti­tle spon­sor is First Fi­nan­cial Bank with other spon­sor­ships pro­vided by the El Do­rado News Times and Kim Smith Pho­tog­ra­phy. The event is a part­ner­ship of the El Do­rado Ed­u­ca­tion Foun­da­tion, El Do­rado School District, Mur­phy Oil Cor­po­ra­tion, and the El Do­rado Prom­ise.

Sign­ing: El Do­rado High School stu­dents re­ceiv­ing the El Do­rado Prom­ise sign to go to col­lege. Aca­demic Sign­ing Day will take place at 1:30 p.m. on Wed­nes­day with for­mer Arkansas Ra­zor­back bas­ket­ball player, Sid­ney Mon­crief, be­ing the key­note speaker.

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