Sir Charles Plays Saint Charles

During a visit to Saloon last summer, Charles Barkley asked Christian Abate how he was enjoying teaching, and was disappointed to learn that Abate had still not returned to Temple because of problems securing financial aid. Abate, 28, of South Philly, started at Temple in 1997, months after graduating from St. John Neumann High. Sir Charles told Abate he would like to help him with his tuition, and Abate wasn’t sure how to respond. Barkley didn’t give him much time, telling Abate that he had the length of Barkley’s meal to decide. Abate wisely accepted. Barkley says that helping Abate is in line with his efforts to aid in education, which has been important to him in recent years. Barkley’s given $1 million to his Alabama high school Leeds, another million to Corningstone High, in a poor area of Birmingham, and $1 million to Auburn University, where he played before being drafted by the Sixers in 1984.

Philadelphia Daily News