The Relentless Tour Makes a Stop at Memorial Stadium
Student-athletes, staff, and community members came together Wednesday, March 7th to hear guest speaker Anthony Ianni tell his story of courage, perseverance, and overcoming obstacles. As part of the Relentless Tour, a grassroots initiative designed to eradicate bullying and inspire courage, Ianni speaks to students all over the country.
A graduate of Michigan State University, Ianni is the first known individual with Autism to play Division I College Basketball. Overcoming obstacles became the one constant in his childhood, after being diagnosed with autism and being told he would never be capable of living an independent life. However, he did not let that get in the way of him pursuing his goals. “Throughout my life, I have overcome obstacles that are bigger and greater than myself, but my family, teachers, and coaches helped get me through.” Ianni reflected.
As he shared his story, Ianni’s message centered on three main life principles: motivation, hard work, and support. He discussed the importance of not letting hard times get in the way of pursuing a goal. “You will all be faced with obstacles and decisions that can put so much pressure on you that you’ll want to walk away from your dreams,” Ianni explained. “However, what you do impacts not only you, but everyone you love and that support system is everything.”
After his collegiate career, Anthony’s passion for others grew in his role within the Michigan Department of Civil Rights. He has used his platform as a student-athlete to help raise awareness and support for individuals with autism and their families. His leadership on the Relentless Tour has encouraged people everywhere to be relentless in the pursuit of their dreams.
At the conclusion of the presentation, members of the Nebraska Men’s and Women’s Basketball Teams presented Ianni with a Husker jersey to show their gratitude and support for his message.