Greenway, Fitzgerald Team Up for Financial Football at Lincoln High

Minnesota Viking Chad Greenway speaks to students at Lincoln High School about a financial literacy education program.

The Chicago Bears rallied to beat the Minnesota Vikings 14-8 this morning in the library at Lincoln High School.


That’s right, a team of Lincoln students led by Alejo Torres of the Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago scored a late touchdown to upend a team led by Viking linebacker and former Iowa Hawkeye All-American Chad Greenway and Iowa’s State Treasurer, Michael Fitzgerald, in a hard-fought skirmish of Financial Football.

Financial Football is a joint effort of Visa and the NFL designed to improve the financial literacy of students.

Chad Greenway and State Treasurer Mike Fitzgerald team up with Lincoln students for a game of Financial Football.

It’s a video game combined with multiple choice questions about various aspects of consumer financial management.

Correct answers equate to gained yardage. Incorrect ones result in sacks and turnovers.
The game is one element of a classroom curriculum employed by Sue Krantman, who teaches Personal Financial Management at Lincoln. Seven of her students placed in the top 20% out of 80,000 students nationwide who took the National Financial Literacy Challenge earlier this semester. She’s active with the Iowa Jump$tart Coalition, a nonprofit organization comprised of over 30 individuals and organizations representing business, government, and education with the mission of improving personal financial literacy. Krantman was instrumental in arranging this morning’s event as part of Money Smart Week, an outreach program of the Federal Reserve Bank. April is also Financial Literacy Month in Iowa.
Krantman has strong feelings about the subject she teaches. “I believe it should be a graduation requirement, just as Economics is,” she said. “It’s vital for kids to learn about credit scores, doing their taxes and household budgeting. In class we simulate all of the things they’ll face in their real lives.”
Even to the point of each student establishing and managing their own bank account through a partnership the school has with Wells Fargo. Junior Billy Bacus said before he enrolled in Krantman’s class he had a part-time job and a goal of saving up to buy his own used car. But he spent money faster than he earned it. Now he holds himself to a plan that’s literally put him in the driver’s seat. “It’s a great feeling to have some money in the bank,” he said.
Greenway told the students he learned some lasting lessons about personal finance the hard way while he was in college at Iowa, despite being on a football scholarship. “I got my first credit card and bought my wife (who happened to be an accounting major) some nice gifts. Pretty soon I ran the balance up to about $700 and I had maybe thirty bucks.” Greenway’s situation has changed dramatically since then as a well-paid NFL veteran. But he and his wife still operate by the sound principles of budgeting and saving they first adopted when money was tight for them.
But back to the game…
The Vikings took the opening kickoff and drove the length of the field before fumbling a question near the goal line about savings account regulations. When the Bears couldn’t recover with the correct answer the Vikes scored by correctly answering the next query on identity theft.
The Bears marched back but were stopped when the Vikings intercepted on a question about truth in lending.
Trailing 8-0 at halftime the Bears came out firing in the second half, sacking the Vikings on a balloon payment blitz. The tying touchdown came on a play run from the small business formation followed by a two-point conversion of debt/income ratios. Later, the key play in the Bears’ winning drive was a 43 yard gain on a completion of car rental application fees at airports. The winning points came on a one-yard plunge by GNP.
The Vikings’ last gasp possession in the waning minutes was thwarted on back-to-back sacks by inflation and credit worthiness as time expired.
Greenway, undaunted in defeat, stayed on the field after the game to sign autographs for student/athletes from both teams.
To learn more about Financial Football click here: and for more about the Iowa Jump$tart Coalition click here:

Photos from the Financial Football event at Lincoln High:

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