A former Kentucky State University football standout is back on campus and giving back to the community.
Chadwick J. Rives, originally from East St. Louis, Illinois, graduated from Kentucky State and spent time in the National Football League (NFL). Rives and former teammate Jacquise Lockett signed free agent contracts with the Washington Redskins in 2015.
Rives, an offensive lineman, started every game his sophomore through senior year. Each year he blocked for a 1,000-yard rusher. During his career, he was named team captain, an All-American and All-Commonwealth. He played in the 2015 FCS National Bowl and served on the student athlete advisory committee.
“I had a wonderful experience in the NFL,” Rives said. “Even though my time was cut short, I made the best of it.”
Rives said the NFL is completely different from college.
“It’s faster and more complex,” Rives said. “Most of the individuals who play in the NFL are faster and stronger than you, so you have to work that much harder than everyone else.”
Now Rives works at Kentucky State University. He’s also spent the last two summers volunteering for the summer food service program.
Gidgett Taylor Sweazy, the Kentucky State University summer food service program coordinator, said it’s a nationwide program that helps feed children when school is out of session. In Kentucky, the program is operated through the Kentucky Department of Education Community and School Nutrition department. Kentucky State University serves as a sponsor, Sweazy said.
“This year we served over 12,000 meals in a three-county service area, including Anderson, Franklin and Henry counties,” Sweazy said.
Rives said his first summer with the program was part of his job, but he came back this summer because he enjoys helping others.
Rives’ responsibilities included picking up food at the vendor (Frankfort Independent Schools), checking the meal count and food storage temperature, delivering to sites and completing meal service paperwork.
“Chad acted in a training role in 2018, as well,” Sweazy said. “He trained other members of our team on procedure, routes and paperwork.”
Rives has made a strong impression within the program.
“Chad is a great role model for anyone that knows him,” Sweazy said. “He is patient, works well with others, polite to all and flexible. He loves the program and believes in what we do.”
Sweazy said Rives does his best work with children.
“He is great with kids and talks with them about playing in the NFL, the importance of taking care of your body and getting an education,” Sweazy said.