In a country striving for to keep up with ever growing standards of the 21st Century, many in Ghana turn a blind eye to sports and the enormous benefits that can be streamed from the digital age of turning the human body into the ultimate symbol of triumph.
This holds true in Ghana where, football aside, many talented young individuals have gone astray from sports fully aware of malaises and constraints attached to carving something meaningful in life with it. Before 2005, even football suffered the same fate other sports disciplines face today. Teenagers and young individuals were nudged out of the sport into a much preferable habit or hobby of learning.
Things changed when money became synonymous with the sport and now Ghana is at cross roads with the effects of this change as the poor country continues to plough deep into financial reserves to meet such desires. However, not all is gloomy and pitch dark. Courageous individuals have made the bold decision to unstick with the status quo that has crippled the nation’s sports sector.
One of such individuals is Dr. Tetteh Nettey, President of Marshalls University College.
The charismatic yet humble Doctor has been front and center of Marshalls revolutionary and legendary transformation. Founded in 2012, Marshalls University, hitherto Meridian Pre-University College, came unto the Ghanaian tertiary scene which thankfully are providing several avenues for many young individuals to pursue an education far away from crowded public institutions.
Like the property boom and ensuing rush in Dubai, the private tertiary institutions have become one of the most sought after commodities.
Due to this, many of such institutions lack the required standards of what tertiary institutions ought to be and when I say required standards, I mean institutions that cover all the basis of sound education including sports. For Marshalls University-still a relatively young institution, the visionary leader Dr Nettey saw sports, precisely Ghana’s second most popular game basketball, as one of many endeavours to help break Marshalls from the rest of the pack.
An extensive scholarship scheme was initiated to rope in some of Ghana’s best talents into the institution. With this scheme in motion, Marshalls have killed two birds with the proverbial one stone as aside providing Ghana’s youth with sound, well rounded education, the institution also satisfies ever growing humanitarian needs since student beneficiaries are from not so sound financial backgrounds.
A tertiary institution offering scholarships isn’t something unheard of but looking at Marshalls, one ought to marvel at the sheer scale of financial commitment of the institution is mind blowing. Considering the high cost of tertiary education in Ghana with many students struggling to foot bills, Marshalls move of kickstarting a scholarship scheme not exclusively based on academic success but sports as well.
Anyone harboring flickering of thoughts undermining the immense benefits of such a system, should just take a look out west across the Atlantic to see how the greatest nation on earth has used like-schemes as foundations to develop world class learning hubs. The U.S. has made sports an engrained feature in its educational fabric which has provided multiple avenues for individuals in the nation to make something out of their lives which wouldn’t have been possible even in the land of free.
Just as the University of North Carolina gave Michael Jordan the chance to become the a modern god, Marshalls University is giving Daniel Okoe Laryea and Mishael Jamani Salifu to name a few, the chance to be the Jordan’s of the next generation.
Results have been encouraging as the fruits of the extensive work done by Dr. Nettey and the technical team headed by young enterprising coach James Okine who in just two years has shaped the team into a world beater. It started in 2015, where the little known team caused massive waves in Ghana by beating behemoths University of Ghana en route to a shock fourth place finish in its’ maiden appearance in the Universities, Polytechnics and Colleges (UPAC) Basketball Championship.
As it prepares to improve its’ lot in the upcoming edition of Ghana’s grandest basketball competition early next month, Marshalls University College’s outstanding basketball team emerged victorious in the just ended Private Universities Students Association Games (PUSAG) Basketball competition.
The team didn’t only showed class by going unbeaten in the tournament but showed immense character by fighting through for 44-42 win over Radford University College after two over time periods.
On April 8, the PUSAG champions will face 2016 Ghana Universities Sports Association (GUSA) Basketball competition in a headline game in the UPAC Championship. One man’s foresight has turned a tiny institution to a transcending elite tertiary hub that rubs shoulders with the very best.
With Zone G qualifiers set to commence on Friday April 8 at the University of Ghana (UG), Dr. “Marshall” Tetteh Nettey will surely be courtside cheering his guys on as they take on 2016 Ghana Universities Sports Association (GUSA)Basketball champions.
The 2016 UPAC Championship is headlined by Rexona, supported by Fanyogo, MTN and CAL Bank in partnership with Basketballghana.com, Y FM, TV3 and Ghana Sports.