|PLANO, Texas, Nov. 27, 2018 /PRNewswire/ — Nearly 35 years after launching its iconic BOOK IT! program, Pizza Hut is expanding its commitment to literacy through its partnership with the National Football League by joining forces with Pizza Hut NFL player ambassadors and team partners to shine a spotlight on the importance of reading to kids and parents across the nation.
This Giving Tuesday, Pizza Hut is teaming up with Los Angeles Rams All-Pro running back Todd Gurley to amplify his commitment to childhood reading through activations in the community, on the field and across social media during Weeks 13-15 of this NFL season.
“In our first year as the Official Pizza Sponsor of the NFL, we have a powerful opportunity to work with the League, its teams and players to do even more to support childhood literacy – a cause Pizza Hut has championed for more than three decades,” said Marianne Radley, chief brand officer, Pizza Hut, U.S. “The support of these NFL players really exemplifies their commitment to success on and off the field for kids across the country, and we’re privileged to work with athletes like Todd Gurley. His passion for literacy will not only inspire young readers but will also help drive awareness for this critical social issue we’re hoping to improve.”
This year, Todd will champion literacy for the NFL’s My Cause My Cleats initiative by wearing custom-designed Nike cleats dedicated to reading during the LA Rams home game on Dec. 16. The cleats feature Todd’s children’s book of choice, “The Magician’s Hat” written by fellow NFL player Malcolm Mitchell, and Pizza Hut partner First Book, a nonprofit dedicated to creating equal access to quality education for children in need.
“Growing up, I was taught that reading and writing were the foundation for my education,” said Todd Gurley, running back for the Los Angeles Rams. “Knowing the importance of literacy programs for kids across the country, I’m teaming up with First Book and my fellow Georgia alumni and Super Bowl champion Malcolm Mitchell, author of ‘The Magicians Hat’, for My Cause My Cleats.”
Leading up to their designated My Cause My Cleats home game on Dec. 16, the LA Rams and Pizza Hut will bring children from Inglewood together for a once-in-a-lifetime reading event with Todd to further emphasize the importance and power of reading.
“My Cause My Cleats is a great way to showcase the philanthropic passions of NFL players,” said NFL SVP of Social Responsibility Anna Isaacson. “We are proud to highlight the hundreds of players who make a tremendous impact on our communities every day.”
The brand is also extending its relationship with Seattle Seahawks wide receiver Tyler Lockett, who teamed up with BOOK IT! earlier this season to surprise students at a Seattle school, spending the afternoon with them to discuss the power of reading and imagination. In late December, Pizza Hut, the Seahawks and Tyler will host another special reading event in Seattle to inspire young readers in the local community.