Nneka Ogwumike played basketball at Stanford, where she was a three-time All American and led the Cardinals to four Final Fours. In 2012, she was the No. 1 draft pick to the LA Sparks and named WNBA Rookie of the Year. She’s been a four-time All Star, a league MVP and she’s played in two WNBA championships – once as a winner and once as a runner-up. And she’s not even 30-years-old.

I caught up with Nneka on the Extraordinary Happens podcast, and I asked her about the power of sport and what it means for kids around the world. Here’s what she told me.

“I learned being in sports, especially in team sports, it builds character. You withstand things that you wouldn’t in normal everyday life as a youngster, but as life goes on, those qualities and those traits that you develop are incredibly advantageous for you when you’re trying to go through hard and good things in life,” Nneka said.

“The educational opportunity is huge. There are a lot of kids that without sports wouldn’t have the opportunity to gain any type of education. A lot of kids don’t realize that just because you love the sport and you’re really good at it when you’re 13 doesn’t mean you’re going to be in the NBA. You have to be able to rely on what really matters, and that’s your mind and what you can offer,” she explained.

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