Nikki and Bradley Bozeman Discuss Battling Bullying

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Nikki and Bradley Bozeman Talk About Battling Bullying

Interview Transcription:

Bobby: Who many of you know. They are two incredible people. In the last couple of years, I’ve had the honor of being able to see them do their thing with literally thousands of kids around the Baltimore area. Bradley, most of you know, is the starting left guard for the Baltimore Ravens, and is a superstar on our team. Looking forward to a Super Bowl this year. Hopefully we’ll have some NFL this year.

Bobby: And Nikki is probably the best athlete among us, having been a star basketball player, who I’ve seen play. She is a dominant force on the basketball court, was a star at the University of Alabama, star center, and just two incredible, incredible people. So guys, welcome to Facebook Live.

Nikki Bozeman: Yes.

Bradley Bozeman: Yeah.

Nikki Bozeman: Thanks for having us.

Bobby: I figured we’d just get started. How are you guys doing? How’s everything going with being at home and the coronavirus, and training and all the rest? How’s it going?

Bradley Bozeman: Yeah. It’s been good. It’s been just another day in quarantine. Just trying to make the best out of it and take this opportunity to do a lot of home projects. Just trying to stay busy.

Bobby: Nik, how are you doing? How are you doing with Bradley? How’s he doing being at home every day?

Nikki Bozeman: It’s good. I’ve just told him right now, I was like, “You’re whistling. You cannot whistle.” He’s a constant whistler. I’m like, we either have to have some music or something. But other than that it’s been good. We’ve been doing a lot of home projects, keeping us busy. Every day we’re like, “All right, what are we tackling today?” Because it gives you a sense of direction for the day.

Bobby: So I got a lot of questions in advance, and before we start talking serious stuff about anti-bullying and your foundation and your cross-country RV tour and all the rest, so Bradley had had about a dozen questions as to how’s it going preparing for the NFL season? And about 100 people texting me saying, “Find out if we’re having an NFL season.” So any commentary on that? Any news you could break here?

Bradley Bozeman: You know, I wish they would loop me in. But I know about as much as everyone else does. We’re just preparing like there’s going to be a season. I intend there to be a season, 100%. I think we’re going to play. So just getting ready for the season. So you’re just doing the typical things we’d be doing in this time.

Bobby: Would now be OTAs and things like that? Where are you, in the power, just basically working out?

Bradley Bozeman: Typically in a normal schedule we’re in OTA. We’re starting to transition into OTAs. This is Week Two of the workout. And we’re just going away at it. And right now it’s working out. It’s running. It’s meeting on Zoom. It’s just trying to be the best version of ourselves.

Bobby: Great. That’s great. All right. Well, not moving away from football, but I have a feeling we’re going to get a lot of questions about football. But it has been for me an absolute pleasure, it’s an issue that we’ve all talked about together a lot, something I care very deeply about. You guys have taken time to a whole nother level, this issue of anti-bullying and the creation of your Bradley and Nikki Bozeman Foundation. Can you tell people, because a lot of people have heard about your efforts and going round to schools, why are you two so passionate about this issue?

Bradley Bozeman: I mean, for us, me and Nikki have a common ground in bullying. We weren’t both like this when we were kids. I tell the kids I looked like Augustus Gloop from Charlie and the Chocolate Factory. We struggled with that growing up, and kids calling me fat and stupid, and all that typical childhood stuff that a lot of people face.

Bradley Bozeman:  I was very lucky, I had some great parents that taught me the values of who I was as a person, and what I stand for in this life. So I’m just trying to pass that message along, and we are trying to change some kids lives, and show them that there’s some light at the end of the tunnel.

Nikki Bozeman: I think mine too was I was super tall, so I was probably 5′ 7″, 5′ 8″ in probably fifth or sixth grade going into middle school. I remember being taller than my fifth grade teacher which was a guy. So I was super tall. And obviously when you look a little different, it tends to lead to people pointing that out.

Nikki Bozeman: I was always just abnormally tall for our age, so that’s where it started for me. I think we both figured out we had a common ground when we were younger and working through it, our outlets were sports, and I guess we can get into that later, about our spiel for why we’re going to these schools, and what we’re talking about. But yeah, we just found out that this is how we got through it, so we’re trying to share a message to help these kids.

Bobby: So you both were bullied when you were children. How did that manifest itself besides being called names? Obviously it’s a different time, right? I mean, now it’s all online and Facebook. So did you experience that or was it more face-to-face? And then, for kids that are out there that are being bullied, how did you face it? How did you each face the bullies that you were experiencing?

Bradley Bozeman: For me it was mostly face-to-face. I think in the time period that Nikki and I were growing up, Facebook and all that wasn’t really a huge thing. That didn’t really happen until we got into, probably, high school. At least for me. The later end of my high school career. But it was just… I was very fortunate, grew out of it pretty quickly, and got into the football field. And then turned that page pretty early in my career, because I was so big. I mean, I was so much bigger than everyone else. And just to be able to face those guys, and to be able to stand up for myself.

Nikki Bozeman: I think mine obviously started face-to-face on the bus. As you probably heard in some of our history vividly remember Travis from-

Bobby: Travis.

Nikki Bozeman: Yep. Travis. I’ll never forget it. So mine started on the bus when I was younger, and then it led into middle school. I always start out with telling the kids, you know, “Your parents always love to point out how they had it so much harder than you growing up,” and they can tell them that they have it harder than them because they have social media, which their parents did not have growing up. So we were saying how the rise of social media has been such a big thing in the last 10-ish years. So they have to deal with it from the time they wake up till the time they go to bed.

Nikki Bozeman: A lot of people, like really us, we went to school from 8:00 to 2:00 or 8:00 to 3:00 and that was the only time where we had to worry about it, and when we got home, we were home. But they’re different, because by the time they have a cellphone, they can see it from sunup to sundown, or eyes open, eyes closed. So mine was really face-to-face on the bus, but then it was more, in high school… I never really had. I think Myspace was the big thing. I never really had Myspace or any of that. I guess I was either sheltered, I guess you could say, because I didn’t really see what people were saying.

Nikki Bozeman: But I mean, girls were just ruthless in high school. It wasn’t really to the face any more because it was girls talking behind your back, or talking about you online. So that was just a different… It was the same but different. It went from confrontation on the bus to talking behind your back online. It was just a similar form but different. So I think we both just threw ourselves into our sport, and that’s what we preach to the kids when we go. Finding your outlet, or finding your why, and how I describe it to them is… And it goes for really any age. “What would you be so excited if I were to wake you up every morning at 3 a.m.? What would you be so excited to do?”

Nikki Bozeman: For some people, it’s like, mine used to be, or mine is basketball, and then it could be baking, it could be filming, making tutorials on YouTube, or hair tutorials. We have a lot of friends who do that and that’s what they love. And then guitar. It could literally be anything, as long as it’s constructive. That’s what you would wake up every morning at 3 a.m. to do, then that’s your why.

Nikki Bozeman: So we preach that, and it’s a big message for us, because if you can find your why, you can find your passion and outlet early, you could train your brain that any time you’re having these distress, or any time you’re having these, something’s going wrong, you could train your brain to say, “Okay, now it’s time for me to go play the guitar. Now it’s time for me to go pick up a basketball.” Because it’s that circle where, okay, this sucks but I can combat it with this.

Nikki Bozeman: It’s long-winded, but when we go to the schools, we talk about mountains. So as when people say things to you that are hurtful, or they talk about you online, or they do anything to hurt you, it creates this mountain. It piles and piles and piles and piles on top of each other. Well if you can find your outlet or your why early instead of climbing that mountain, which a lot of kids these days do, going back on social media, the rise of social media for the past 10 years, you know? And the rise of childhood suicide. So suicide is the leading killer in young adults over the past 10 years. And I don’t want to say it’s hand-in-hand, but I want to say there is a big influence of social media coming about close to 10 years ago with Facebook and Myspace.

Nikki Bozeman: So, what’s happening is that mountain is building, and they’re climbing up that mountain and they’re getting to the top and they’re like, “I don’t know where to go. I don’t know what to do. Nobody’s here to help me.” And then that’s when all the other stuff comes in. Whereas now we’re trying to get to them early so we can teach them that you need to find something constructive, so that when those things start to pile, you can sweep them to the side.

Nikki Bozeman: We always tell them, we say, “You can sweep them to the side, and you can walk through it. You’re still going to see them. You’re still going to see the mounds on either side of you. But you’re going to be walk through them. And that’s why it’s important, because it’s not like you’re climbing this mountain by yourself. You’re able to walk through it. It’ll still hurt. It’ll still be painful. But you’ll be able to get through it by being able to find this coping mechanism with your outlet or your why.”

Nikki Bozeman: So that’s why we go into the schools, to tell our story, but share with message with them in hopes that they can start now and not wait till they’re halfway up the mountain, or all the way up the mountain, to be like, “Oh, gosh, what do I do now?”

Bobby: That’s amazing. And I’ve had the absolute privilege of seeing you guys do your thing with students a number of times. Let me ask you this. That didn’t just start in Baltimore, though. You all were doing this… I mean, you both graduated from the University of Alabama in 2000 and… Sorry.

Nikki Bozeman: I was ’16, he was-

Bradley Bozeman: ’18.

Nikki Bozeman: ’18.

Bobby: You were ’18, you were 2016. So you guys were doing your assemblies and everything down in Alabama as well. I think I read somewhere that you did 30, 40, 50 schools, maybe more, in the Alabama area. Where did you come up with this idea? I don’t know, it’s just an amazing thing. How did you guys get started doing this thing, talking to the kids? Was it just somebody you knew? I’m sorry. That’s my question. Because I started reading up on it. Because I didn’t actually know that, I knew that you were doing it here, but I didn’t realize how much you had been doing it down at the University of Alabama.

Bradley Bozeman: Right. We were asked to come to the school, or, we were actually asked to do a video for this little girl that was getting bullied. So we contacted the person back, like, “Why don’t we come to the school and we’ll talk to the girl? Give them some inspirational talk or whatever.” And then we get there and the principal is like, “Well, do you want to talk to the entire school?” And we’re like, “Sure.” If you had known me at the time, I am not a public speaker at all. In a million years I would not have said that I was going to be doing public speaking.

Nikki Bozeman: If I told him he had to go public speak he would immediately start sweating.

Bradley Bozeman: So we went in, and the words just started flowing, and the emotions started rolling, and it was just this calling to Nikki and I. When we got back in the car, we just both started bawling. Just the impact that we felt and how these kids were struggling. No matter where you’re at, these kids are struggling. We knew at that moment that was what our calling was. And ever since then we’ve been on a roll ever since then.

Nikki Bozeman: I think from then though, for that period, that was our, “Oh, my gosh, this is what we want to do,” and then we weren’t really sure what to do with it, if that makes sense. It was probably a six to eight-month stint. And then I think somebody else called right before the draft, because when he graduated in… What did you graduate? You graduated ’18, but I’m saying what month? Or were you still in school when we were doing-

Bradley Bozeman: I was still in school.

Nikki Bozeman: Okay. He was still in school but it was his last two months before the draft. They were like, “Hey, will you come to this school?” and, “Hey, will you come to this school?” And we’re like, “Hey, we could actually just go to a bunch of schools.” I think we had 40.

Bradley Bozeman: No, it was 28.

Nikki Bozeman: 28 schools in the month of April, and I think we’ve had about 40 schools total in Alabama.

Bradley Bozeman: Yeah.

Bobby: Wow. That’s amazing. And I’ve seen it before, and I got to say, when you first told me what you were going to do, when we went to our first… I can’t remember which school we went to here. It was Newtown Elementary or Fort Garrison… I can’t remember which one, and you told me that you were going to ask the kids to share their own experiences. I’ve got to be honest, I was like, “Okay.” I was a little skeptical.

Nikki Bozeman: It always freaks everyone out. Whenever I call the school and explain, because they’re like, “What are you going to do?” So I tell them a little thing, and I tell them, “At the end we open the floor for kids to share their stories, to ask for advice, to get things off their chest.” And they’re like, “Well, we don’t…” I’m like, “Trust me.” So we create a very controlled environment. I scare them a little bit so that they all behave. But we’ve never had-

Bobby: I’ve seen that too.

Nikki Bozeman: You what?

Bobby: I’ve seen you guys do that too.

Nikki Bozeman: Yes. Because you have to set the tone right. If we were, I don’t know-

Bradley Bozeman: Goofy.

Nikki Bozeman: Yeah. If we were just like, “Oh, yeah,” then they wouldn’t take it seriously, and then it would literally be nothing. And that’s what the teacher would be afraid of. But I would… Scare them isn’t really a good term, but I very strongly encourage them not to goof off. But it’s literally one of the best parts of our segments, because when kids are struggling, honestly, they do. They want to tell someone and they want to talk to someone. They just really don’t know who. And sometimes they just want to get it off their chest.

Nikki Bozeman: We say all the time, “If you’re not feeling comfortable telling your story, you can ask for a friend, and you can be asking for a friend, asking advice of what to do, and that’s a way to ask whatever you would like to ask.” I know we get the question a lot, “What could…”

Nikki Bozeman: I really talk about preaching an outlet. Finding your outlet, and finding your why. Bradley really preaches finding a person to confide in, whether that’s an aunt, or uncle, or cousin, or somebody around you, teacher, counselor. So it’s a combination of both, I think is really the success to it all. But when we talk about finding someone to be able to trust and talk to, I know a lot of these kids, we’ll go into these schools, and they’re like, “Well, I don’t want to go sit down with a counselor. That’s weird. They’re an adult. We don’t really know them. I don’t really know what to do.”

Nikki Bozeman: So, we encourage them to just go introduce yourself, go say, “Hey, my name is Brian, and I’m really excited that you’re my counselor.” And then just have them introduce their name. And then I say, “Go back and ask them if they have a family. Ask them if they’re married. Ask them about their brothers and sisters.” And that’s it, and then leave. And I’m like, slowly go in there and ask them questions about them, as the counselor, and then you’ll be able to build that repertoire with them, and you’ll be able to build that friendship, and then you’ll feel comfortable opening up. But I don’t encourage them… Because that’s scary to a kid, to just go spill their whole lives to an adult that they don’t even know.

Bobby: Well, what’s amazing is they spill it to you guys though, immediately.

Nikki Bozeman: Yeah.

Bobby: I’ve seen them. It’s almost like, “I think this guy could protect me.” Are there any stories? Because I know you’ve done so many of these things. And I’ve seen a number of really horrible stories that people are willing to share. Are there any that stick out to you out of all the schools you’ve gone to? Kids maybe that you’ve stayed in touch with or stories that they’ve shared with you, not using names obviously, but that have stuck with you guys?

Bradley Bozeman: Yeah. For sure. Probably one of our first kids that we’ve mentored. He was similar to my situation growing up. He’s a big kid. He was just different than all his friends. He was two foot taller than everyone else. And he was really struggling. I mean, he’s moved schools, and a bunch of, just to try to find solutions to the problem of being bullied and being picked on. It was a struggle for him.

Bradley Bozeman: And then now, we’ve been able to mentor him over the past three years, and to see him make that transformation into this… I mean, he’s starting on his junior varsity team. He’s made all these new friends. He’s gotten in shape. He’s done all these things. And now he’s like the popular kid in his school. And I think that is just so cool to see. These kids, they don’t see a light at the end of the tunnel. They don’t know what’s going to happen in their lives. And to see a kid find that and to be who he wants to be is just so special, just so remarkable to us, and just to see his success and the things he’s done so far has been so cool.

Nikki Bozeman: I think, too, it’s crazy just the trustworthiness these kids have in a stranger. Because we don’t… We’ve only known them for the amount of time we’re at their school, and we have kids, you’ve been there, talking about trying to commit suicide.

Bobby: Right.

Nikki Bozeman: Different friends trying to kill themselves. Cutting themselves. All this. I mean, the gamut of things you could ever think of, the worst things possible. They’re just telling to, I guess strangers, to them. So that’s why we try to create a very safe and very controlled environment, and because you will get people like that that do want to share, and are able to be, or do want your counsel.

Nikki Bozeman: I think that, and then also having that way, because if you go on our website and you send us an email, it only goes to Bradley and I. So we’re able to answer that, and we get a lot of kids… I mean, you’ll go and then there’ll be 10, 20 kids after, like, “I didn’t really want to share because my bully was sitting next to me,” or, “I didn’t feel comfortable,” or something like that, and so we’ll be able to counsel them through online. So that’s been really helpful to do. We’ve gotten a lot of kids through there, which has been great.

Bobby: And that website is, just in case anybody’s looking, is?

Nikki Bozeman: Yeah. It’s brad, B-R-A-D, Nikki, N-I-K-K-I, Bozeman, B-O-Z-E-M-A-N, .com. And you’ll see the whole gamut of our story, how we started, pictures of all the schools we went to, our cross-country tour which we’ll talk about in a minute-

Bobby: Absolutely.

Nikki Bozeman: You’ll see everything on there. And then the Contact Us is what comes straight to Bradley and I.

Bobby: That is great. So let’s see if I can figure out technology. I’m not good at technology at all. But let’s see if this works. There it is. Can you see that?

Nikki Bozeman: Yeah. It’s cut off a little on the top. But it’s okay.

Bobby: Got it. Let me see if I can move this around. There’s all these nifty gadgets. Did that work? Well, I wanted to launch into this a little bit before we talk about the tour, the national tour, which is absolutely incredible. This is the logo for the Brad and Nikki Bozeman Foundation. Let me make this… No, that’s not what we wanted. Here we… Ah, whatever. Let’s go back. I can’t get rid of it.

Bobby: All right. So you guys created a foundation. For those who are football fans and they saw all of the Baltimore Ravens wearing costumes, and actually I think Lamar Jackson in his Harry Potter outfit, that went viral of course, you guys were Fred Flintstone and you were dressed up as… I can’t remember her name. Wilma? I can’t remember. Wilma, right?

Nikki Bozeman: Right.

Bobby: Is it Wilma?

Bradley Bozeman: Yep.

Bobby: Wilma.


Fred and Wilma. Okay. It’s been a while.

Nikki Bozeman: Our mobile that we had.

Bobby: It was Betty or Wilma. I can’t remember which. But it was just an amazing… You had this incredible launch party which was incredible. Tell everybody about the foundation. What you’re trying to do. What you maybe hope to accomplish with the foundation.

Nikki Bozeman: Yeah. So it was started in October of 2018. So we’re going on, this’ll be our second full year. And so we basically were trying to… I mean obviously we go to schools and we host assemblies at schools, and we do that free of charge for the school because we do really feel like that, to try to spread our message, and get in front of as many kids as possible. So we are a self-funded assembly. And then we also host events during the year, like Bradley was talking about, last year we hosted that Halloween event. We’ll see what happens with the pandemic. We’re hoping to do it again this year, but it’s just dependent on where we’re at and the state of the state.

Nikki Bozeman: We are going to hopefully do that. And then we have a couple other things. We’ve done some face masks with custom logos and stuff like that. So we’re able to raise money that way to then donate it to Nourish Now, which are our friends who are feeding families in Baltimore.

Nikki Bozeman: But basically, really just to have grassroots efforts to help children, whether it’s going to schools and telling our stories. Like right now, we’re just trying to help any way possible, because obviously we can’t go host assemblies. So that’s what we’re trying to do with the face masks, to raise money to then feed families with foods from different local businesses, supporting local businesses. They’re making the mask, so a small business in downtown Baltimore is making the mask, we’re selling masks to protect everyone, and then all the proceeds are going to fund feeding families with Nourish Now.

Nikki Bozeman: So just whatever’s current and relevant, we’re trying to stay in that realm, because obviously, assemblies aren’t possible right now. So just really anything we can do to help the community.

Bobby: That’s amazing. So Nourish Now is helping to feed people currently in Maryland with people that are there having issues because of the coronavirus? So they’re getting food out to families and so forth?

Nikki Bozeman: Yeah. It’s actually a really cool organization. Basically they take food, whether it’s from stadiums, whatever, that is brand new, basically, that can’t be used, and that it would normally be thrown away, it is then donated to Nourish Now. They repurpose, repackage all the food for perishable boxes to give the families. This is year-round they do this.

Nikki Bozeman: I looked on their website. Since 2011, they’ve repurposed and donated almost three million pounds of food.

Bobby: Wow.

Nikki Bozeman: Yeah. Anyway, and then they’re also right now partnering with local businesses and restaurants so that they can keep people employed, and they can buy hot meals through the businesses to then donate to families. So it’s just a whole gamut of just really being able to feed the local families that have really been affected by COVID. And then just everyday life. Year-round, they’re doing, I mean, three million pounds in eight, nine years, is pretty impressive.

Bobby: That’s amazing. So you’re taking a hiatus a little bit because the schools are closed, and now branching out into doing food and security issues and things like that. That’s amazing.

Nikki Bozeman: Right.

Bobby: All right. So I think everybody has heard about it since it was all over the media, it was in Sports Illustrated, I mean it was everywhere. And I think mostly because people were shocked at the mode by which you did this. But at the end of the football season, you two jumped into an RV and instead of doing a vacation, you decided to make your vacation wrapped around your big issue of anti-bullying, and from what I read, and from what I know, and from having talked to you, you went to schools all over the country.

Bobby: So, now it’s not just Alabama and Baltimore and Maryland, but all over the country, to share your message. So how was it? What did you find? Where did you go? I think people really want to hear about the tour that you took. And how was it to be in an RV all that time?

Bradley Bozeman: It was absolutely amazing. Honestly, it was one of the coolest things we’ve ever done in our lives. We started in Maryland and we made our way to Kennesaw, Georgia, which is Nikki’s hometown.

Nikki Bozeman: That’s what I was going to say. Are you going to take them through all the-

Bradley Bozeman: Yeah, I’ll take them through-

Nikki Bozeman: We’ll just take you on a mini-virtual-

Bobby: We want to hear it all.

Nikki Bozeman: Okay.

Bobby: And then it got shut down at the end because of the coronavirus. But we want to hear about these things, and where did you go, and what did you find?

Nikki Bozeman: We’ll tell you everything up until then. Even the bad stuff.

Bradley Bozeman: Right. So we went to Kennesaw, Georgia, which is Nikki’s hometown, and we spoke there.

Nikki Bozeman: So we got to go to my middle school where it all started. And my science teacher from, I think she was sixth or seventh grade, is now the principal. So she was there. And it was really cool to see her. Because I walked in, because I was under Bozeman, she’s like, “You’re a Hegstetter.” I’m like, “Yeah, it’s me.” She’s like, “Oh, my gosh, I remember you.” So that was fun. So then we went to his hometown.

Bradley Bozeman: Yeah. We went to my hometown, where my issues were. And we’ve spoken there before, but it’s always so special, so different, no matter how many times we go to a school, because there’s always new issues. So we went there, got to see my family, we saw Nikki’s family in Kennesaw, then left from there and we went down to New Orleans. And we spoke at Harry S. Truman Middle School.

Nikki Bozeman: Yes.

Bradley Bozeman: In New Orleans, and it was during Mardi Gras, so we were able to spend Valentine’s Day there, and-

Nikki Bozeman: We spent Valentine’s Day eating crawfish down on Mardi Gras.

Bobby: Nice.

Nikki Bozeman: Yeah.

Bradley Bozeman: It was really cool. So we got to experience Mardi Gras a little bit.

Nikki Bozeman: Also, the nice thing about traveling in a camper, we only technically stayed in these towns 48 hours. We would pull in, hook up, go see something that night, go to the school the next day and then leave the next day. But because we were in a camper we didn’t have to pack a back, unpack a bag, pack a bag, unpack a bag. By the end of the trip it took us 15 minutes. It was a science.

Nikki Bozeman: So anyway, you got to pull in and you actually got some time to do something, which was nice. It made it like you were there for more than 48 hours because we were traveling in an RV. Anyway, so then we’re going to the next one.

Bradley Bozeman: Yeah. And then we went to Dallas from there. We spoke there, had a good time, we got to have some good barbecue. Went horseback riding.

Nikki Bozeman: Yeah. I’d never been horseback riding before.

Bobby: Wait. Can we take a stop for a second? Is that where I read the article about you and some giant steak?

Bradley Bozeman: That was the next stop.

Nikki Bozeman: The next one.

Bradley Bozeman: We had to drive from Dallas, Texas, all the way to Albuquerque. We stopped in Amarillo, kind of the halfway point, and we were on a local radio show, we called in, we’re on the way to Amarillo. They’re like, “Wait, that’s where the big steak challenge is.” And I was like, “What big steak challenge?” She’s like, “Oh, you have to try it.” We called in weekly with them. So it was like, “Okay, I’ll try it.” I had no clue what it was. We get there, they put you up on this stage.

Nikki Bozeman: It’s called The Big Texan.

Bradley Bozeman: Yeah. The Big Texan. So they put you up on this stage, right in front of the grill. You’re drinking out of pink cups.

Nikki Bozeman: It’s Livestreamed.

Bradley Bozeman: Livestreamed like everything. It’s a 72 oz steak, which is about four and a half pounds.

Nikki Bozeman: It’s this big.

Bobby: Did you do it?

Bradley Bozeman: Yeah. We started it.

Nikki Bozeman: Barely.

Bradley Bozeman: We start it, and I go through the whole thing, and I think you have an hour to eat it. It’s a steak, four fried shrimp, a potato, a roll, and a salad, and you have to eat it all under an hour. And I finished it in 49 minutes and eight seconds. So I had a little bit of time to spare. But it was a really hard challenge. Actually they were really cool. It blew up on social media, and The Big Texan started donating, for anybody that completed the challenge in March, they would donate $50. And for anybody that beat my time they would donate $100. So, they’re really cool. It was very nice to meet them and then to get to their steakhouse.

Nikki Bozeman: What number were you?

Bradley Bozeman: I was the 2,000th and sixth or something.

Nikki Bozeman: Yeah, and something, out of-

Bradley Bozeman: Out of-

Nikki Bozeman: 110,000 or 120,000 or something.

Bobby: It’s almost as big as me.

Nikki Bozeman: It’s been around since 1960. 19-something.

Bradley Bozeman: It’s been a long time.

Nikki Bozeman: Yeah.

Bobby: That’s amazing.

Nikki Bozeman: It’s been around a long time.

Bobby: And again, just for the people that are listening, this wasn’t just a… I mean, you were stopping, every one of these stops, you were going to speak to kids at a school everywhere you went.

Nikki Bozeman: Right.

Bobby: So you spoke to kids in Dallas and you spoke to kids in Amarillo.

Bradley Bozeman: Right.

Nikki Bozeman: No. Amarillo was just an overnight stop.

Bobby: Amarillo was just a stop by.

Bradley Bozeman: Right.

Nikki Bozeman: Dallas to Albuquerque was too long to drive in one day.

Bobby: And just as you’re going through the tour, I’m curious, how did the kids find you? Because obviously you guys are Baltimore Ravens, and we love it here, and you’re in Alabama, obviously, but how did they take it? I mean, you didn’t go to Pittsburgh, did you?

Bradley Bozeman: No. We didn’t.

Nikki Bozeman: We didn’t make it. But we are going to go back.

Bobby: Okay. I just wanted to make sure of that.

Nikki Bozeman: But I think I was nervous, because I know when you and I were calling some of the California schools, they were like, “Man, we don’t know what that is.” “We’re with the Baltimore Ravens. He plays for the Ravens.” They’re like, “I don’t know. I don’t know what you’re talking about. I’m really sorry. We don’t know.” And even the Utah school, they’re like, “We don’t have a professional team. We don’t know what you’re talking about.”

Nikki Bozeman: So I was like, “All right, we’re going to see if we’re good at this or not, because none of these kids know who we are.” So it was a little scary at first. The first couple of schools, obviously no one had any idea who he was, or we were, so we got good at the intro parts of being able to explain the accolades and what we’ve done. And everyone does know Lamar Jackson across the country. So if anyone was wondering, they know him. So they put two and two together that he blocks for Lamar Jackson, then he instantly became cool. So that’s how they figured it out.

Nikki Bozeman: But it was great. I mean, every school was so different. Because we went to inner city schools, we went to schools in the middle of nowhere, we went to huge schools, we went to small schools, we went to low-income schools, we went to high-income schools. We literally went to every school possible. And they had 1,100 or 1,200 kids to 250 kids. So it just was everyone. But I think that it’s crazy. We were going to change our message a little bit depending on the school and the nuance of what was going on relative to them but we really didn’t. Every message was the same, because every problem was the same, which is crazy to us, that you can take every kid and now I can say, every kid across the country is literally having these same, exact problems. And it doesn’t matter if you live in Baltimore, Alabama, or Los Angeles, San Francisco, or Salt Lake City, they all have this same exact issue.

Nikki Bozeman: That was, I don’t want to use the word cool, but it was interesting to see that no matter where we went, that it’s literally the exact same. Which just shows that this is a huge issue.

Bobby: Yeah. No doubt. It’s incredible what you guys are doing and incredible the breadth. I mean, you can see it even now. I want to hear more about the tour. But people are in their home right now and online, and the cyber bullying that’s going on right now is just… I mean, you can actually just any day go on, and not just at kids, but at adults also, just people getting picked on. And it’s growing. It’s such an important issue you guys are working on. I mean, it’s really… It’s inspiring to see you guys and what you do. But anyway, we’re in Amarillo. You ate the steak and then you were gone.

Nikki Bozeman: Oh yeah. Okay. So in Amarillo, ate the steak. Albuquerque was an amazing school. I’ll always remember Albuquerque because of the school. We stayed there for three and a half hours.

Bradley Bozeman: Three and a half hours.

Nikki Bozeman: Our normal presentation is about an hour, hour and a half. They asked so many questions. They were so into it. We talked to everyone, basically, in the school. We hung out and ate lunch with them. It was just a big day and it was so much fun. And they were just a great group of kids and counselors and staff. So I loved that school. That’s what I always remember when I remember Albuquerque.

Nikki Bozeman: And then, we got to go to the top of the Sandia Peak, this mountain, which was super cool, and topped off the day with that. And the Ravens crew flew out for that one, so that was cool for them to be able to be there.

Bobby: The Baltimore Ravens media crew came out for that one?

Bradley Bozeman: Yes.

Nikki Bozeman: Yep. So they flew out to Albuquerque and then we went together. We had the radios in the cars. We were like, “Are you guys still behind us?” We followed each other to the Grand Canyon. So then we went to the Grand Canyon. We stayed Williams, Arizona, and it was so much fun. That was another great school.

Bradley Bozeman: Yeah, it was.

Nikki Bozeman: They had… Williams was the smaller school, remember? Where they went-

Bradley Bozeman: Yes.

Nikki Bozeman: They had a smaller school. But they had this group of kids that had went to a bullying conference a couple weeks before in Phoenix. So we got to meet with them separately, and they’re really advocates in the school. It was jocks to everyone else you could think of. So that was really cool getting to speak with them. Then from there we went to Los Angeles. We stayed in Castaic which was a little bit north. Again, another great school. Then we got to talk with their principal for a while and that was just a really cool experience.

Nikki Bozeman: San Francisco was… We stayed there for the longest because it was halfway. And good thing we did because the truck and the trailer broke down. We had an issue with electricity in the trailer, so camped overnight in so Bradley installed it and we were good. And then the truck, we had to take it to the shop and get this whole thing fixed. It was this whole big ordeal.

Nikki Bozeman: But, if you follow us on Facebook, you can see that we made lemonade out of lemons because we rented a convertible and just went around the city that day when the truck was broken, because we did the school earlier in the trip, and we were just taking a deep breath before we traveled back. But then the truck broke. But it’s fine, because we got it fixed.

Nikki Bozeman: And then, we were like, just pick somewhere random in between San Francisco and Salt Lake City, which is where his buddy lives. So we picked this Winnemucca, Nevada. It’s literally just off of 70. It’s a random town I just picked because it’s off the interstate. It’s literally off the interstate. And we were so excited to go to this town, because it’s a very… 6,500 people. It’s a mining town. But the principal had called us, and they had closed down the town. They were welcoming us into the town. It was a big deal for this town. So it was so cool.

Nikki Bozeman: We parked. They took us out. They showed us all this, everything with the town. And they… What was the people’s names? Remember, the-

Bradley Bozeman: Basque.

Nikki Bozeman: Basque. So Basque culture is a big thing there. The Basque people. So we had this big, traditional Basque dinner which was really cool.

Bradley Bozeman: A lot of food.

Nikki Bozeman: Yeah. It was a lot of food.

Bradley Bozeman: A lot of food.

Nikki Bozeman: You think the South has a lot of food?

Bobby: And… Sorry, go ahead?

Nikki Bozeman: That’s okay. The south, the home-cooked Southern meal is a lot of food. We’re used to a lot of food. They have a lot of food. It was so much food. It was that family-style, and usually you sit in tables of 30 or 40 people and you eat that way but this one they only had a table of four or five, but that’s usually how you eat.

Bobby: And you did a middle school there in that town?

Bradley Bozeman: Yes.

Nikki Bozeman: Yeah. That was a fourth, fifth and sixth, right?

Bradley Bozeman: Yes.

Nikki Bozeman: Yeah. They were really good. That was a pretty… No. No. No, no, no. I was going to say, was the Salt Lake City the… What was the emotional one? No, that was-

Bradley Bozeman: That was Williams.

Nikki Bozeman: No. No. Albuquerque.

Bradley Bozeman: No. Williams.

Nikki Bozeman: Oh. Not you emotional. Kids emotional. The Albuquerque one. That’s where the teachers were crying, the kids were crying.

Bradley Bozeman: Oh, yeah. Okay, okay. Yeah. Yeah, yeah, yeah.

Nikki Bozeman: That’s what I meant. Anyway, go from Winnemucca, so that was a middle school, which was, that was great because the principal and them were awesome. Salt Lake City, Utah, which was really great. I think we did another school there. And that was really great. I’ve never been, so the drive from Winnemucca to Salt Lake, you go through… What is it? What do you drive through to get there? No, it’s Salt Lake City to Denver.

Bradley Bozeman: To Denver.

Nikki Bozeman: To Denver, you go through the… What was it?

Bradley Bozeman: The Colorado Mountains.

Nikki Bozeman: The Colorado Mountains.

Bradley Bozeman: The Rocky Mountains.

Nikki Bozeman: Rocky Mountains and Colorado River.

Bobby: That must have been beautiful. So you went from Nevada to Salt Lake to Denver.

Bradley Bozeman: Right.

Nikki Bozeman: We stayed in Breckenridge.

Bobby: In Breckenridge, and you did another school in Colorado?

Nikki Bozeman: No. We were scheduled to go to the school at 8:45, and the school principal called at 8:15 and said that their state had just declared no meetings of more than 50.

Bobby: Got it.

Nikki Bozeman: So that’s where we were like, “Oh, okay.” But I think the president came out with this whole big thing-

Bradley Bozeman: He said-

Nikki Bozeman: Probably the State of the Union, two days or a day?

Bradley Bozeman: The night before.

Nikki Bozeman: The night before. So I remember, we were at this restaurant and we were with my best friend, and she lives in Denver, and she was like, “This is a big thing.” Her mom was calling her and telling her about all this stuff. We had no idea what was going on. And then we started watching all these NBA games get canceled and all this stuff happening, and we were like, “Holy cow, this is a big deal.”

Nikki Bozeman: So then we started calling the other schools, because we had five schools left after Denver. So four out of the five by that night had already canceled. So we were going to go to this Colorado school and then it was just going to be safer just to come home. And then the Colorado school canceled. So then we came home. We went from there. They canceled at 8:15, and then we did that emotional cancellation on Facebook that morning, and then we pretty much packed up our stuff. Or we stayed that night, the next morning, we left. We drove straight through Kansas City and stayed in Indianapolis for one night.

Nikki Bozeman: Then, we were going to drive straight home, but then his parents had our dog, so we didn’t know what was going to happen, and we didn’t want them to get stuck with him, so we drove from Indianapolis down to Alabama, picked up the dogs and then came home.

Bobby: Got it. It’s an amazing trip. And the amazing thing, it sounds fun, and it’s amazing, but what you did is you went from state to state, and saw a country, but spread your message of anti-bullying all across the country. Which is just an amazing thing for you all to do on your free time. I don’t think people get it. You go through an entire grueling season, both of you, you as a player and you as a player’s spouse, which is maybe even harder-

Nikki Bozeman: Yeah.

Bobby: You go through this entire season and at the end of it, your let down was to go and spend months across the country spreading this incredible message of hope to these kids. Which I just find completely inspiring. By the way, you’re getting, I don’t know if you can see these, there are questions that are coming in. You got some from your coach Isaac [Ronzic 00:42:24] by the way, Nikki.

Nikki Bozeman: Oh, Isaac. Hi Isaac.

Bobby: He wants to know if you’re going to continue on. But I’ve had a bunch, and texts that are coming in. People want to know what you’re doing now, now that you’re stuck at home, and what is it that you… What’s next? You’re heading towards, hopefully, an NFL season and a Super Bowl run, but between now and hoping that the country gets back, but are you continuing to do schools? Are you continuing to do these things with kids? And how are you doing it, since you have to be in your home?

Nikki Bozeman: Yeah. I think another thing that people don’t really think about is a lot of kids’ stressors come from domestic violence at home. We have gotten a lot of emails from kids that are like, “School was my escape, and I don’t know what to do. I can’t go anywhere. I have nothing to do. I have to stay home all the time.” And all this stuff that’s going on. So I’ve answered a lot of emails from kids that are like, “I just don’t know what to do. I can’t get out. I can’t get away from it. School was my six hours to be able to go and talk to people.”

Nikki Bozeman: So that’s been really hard, because what do you tell them to do? You know? So I’ve called a couple of the schools and asked maybe if the teachers could tell the parents they’re going to have a day out with a teacher, or something like that, just to pick up the kid and just let them talk, driving a car somewhere or something. I don’t know. Just trying to figure out that. So that’s been really hard. Just because normally we have answers, and it’s hard when kids are looking for something, like advice, and I don’t know the answer. You know?

Nikki Bozeman: So, that’s been hard. But in the positive side of it, we’ve been able to use this time to get a lot of plans together for upcoming events, and for a lot of things we plan to do and want to do. So it’s given us a lot of time to take a step back. We did, talking to close to 10,000 kids on this road trip, and going to over 12 or 13 schools across 13 different dates, so it was able to gave us some time to step back and realize that we have done so much but we want to propel forward and continue to use that as a springboard, and not just a congratulations, you did that cool thing and now it’s over. So, that’s been our thing, is keeping up with what’s going on, but also to plan for the next events when the time allows.

Bobby: Are you going to continue to go to schools here in Maryland, and is that your plan, is to continue to speak to the kids? I’ve gotten a couple of texts from kids, I see them all the time with you guys, it’s like, “Can you come to my school? Can they come to my school? Can they come to mine?” So I know that even today, you’re going to talk to Fort Garrison Elementary when this interview is done. Have you been doing some of that stuff? And more importantly, are you going to continue doing that here in Maryland? Do you have any more plans for RV trips around the country? Or are you going to take this internationally? Is the next one to go start doing a European trip with the anti-bullying? What’s next for the Bozemans?

Nikki Bozeman: We talked about that. Our only thing with Europe is there would be a little bit of a language barrier depending on where we went. But we have actually talked about that. No. I just blanked on the question.

Bradley Bozeman: About our future plans.

Bobby: Are you going-

Nikki Bozeman: Oh, future plans. Yes. Talking. So we had a bunch of schools scheduled for April, May, so that was sad that we couldn’t go to them. So we’re starting to reschedule for the 2021 school year. I think a couple months in. So whenever they start I think we’re giving it a couple months, just to make sure that they are going to go back to school on time, and stuff like that. But we have had… I think September and October, people have booked into October. So we’re currently taking schools now for the October, November stint. And send an email on our website. So that’s how we keep up with all the schools.

Nikki Bozeman: And then, we are doing… We call them Live Takeovers, but if a school has a Facebook account where the kids are going and daily doing work, we’re going to go on live and answer questions, and they could email questions to their teachers and principals. And then we’re able to go on and talk with the kids about those questions. So that’s been another thing we’ve been excited to do.

Bobby: That’s great. As you were talking, I was trying to figure out how to stream across so people could get a hold of you. I could not figure out the technology, though, so forget it.

Nikki Bozeman: It’s fine.

Bobby: I’m going to quit while I’m ahead. But what an amazing… And you’re actually doing a school today, at Fort Garrison Elementary, when you’re finished with me here today.

Nikki Bozeman: Yep.

Bobby: It’s incredible what you all are doing. So I’ve had a million questions about football, which we haven’t even got to, but this is the important issue. I just want to… I mean, is there anything else you want to… Any last things you guys want to tell anybody who’s listening, whether it’s kids or adults or anything, about the issue of bullying, what they should be thinking about?

Bradley Bozeman: Just get involved. To the parents out there, there’s a lot of technology out there on bullying and software. I know Verizon does a really good job of that type of tracking. But get out there. Do your research. Figure out how to get involved with what’s going on with your child, especially when you see them… Because you want to know those things. You want to know how to help. You want to know how to respond. So get in there and do your research. You have to get in, you have to have those tough conversations. And like I said, there’s a lot of good technology out there now that does a lot of that tracking. So just as far as language, and different behavioral stuff.

Nikki Bozeman: Yeah. I would say for the kids-wise, just to stay encouraged. It’s easy when you’re on social media, it portrays you’re supposed to look a certain way and act a certain way and do your makeup or hair or whatever a certain way. Just encourage to have confidence in yourself regardless of what it is that you’re going through. And know that there’s always a light at the end of the tunnel. There always will be another day. I know that’s a hard thing for kids, especially at a young age to see. They think that this is always going to be their life, and this is always going to be something that they’re going to have to deal with. And it’s not. As soon as something comes up that’s popular to talk about, whether it’s you or something else, within the next few hours, the next news cycle will hit, is what we call it.

Nikki Bozeman: And it’s the same for professional athletes. I get so mad sometimes with people on Twitter that just talk crap about him. But I have to remind myself, the next new thing will come up, and the next thing will happen, and this too shall pass. So we would just encourage everyone listening to take a deep breath and practice your outlet, or talk to someone. But know that there is more and brighter and better days to come.

Bobby: As you were just doing this, I just got a text from my friend, Christine McComas who I know you guys… I think you’ve been in-

Nikki Bozeman: Oh, yeah.

Bobby: So, here in Maryland, for those who are watching maybe that are not from Maryland, we have, in honor of her daughter Grace, we created two series of laws. Actually Grace’s Law and then Grace’s Law 2.0 which, very strong anti-bullying laws, which I know you guys are pushing as well. Maryland’s the strongest in the country. And she wanted me to say thank you to you all for everything that you’re doing. Because quite frankly, it’s inspiring, amazing for the kids to see you two walk in and know that what they’re going through, somebody like you two could be going through. Two unbelievable athletes that have had the same type of experience as them. So it’s inspiring to everything that you two are doing.

Bobby: I don’t want to keep you, because you told me it was a strict time limit before you had to go to your next-

Bobby: Let me make sure. I think I’m in good shape. I got one more minute left. So Brad and Nikki Bozeman, let me even put up a couple of embarrassing pictures of you guys, just so I can show that I can…

Nikki Bozeman: Oh, no.

Bobby: We’ve got… This is a good one. We’ve got on the football field.

Nikki Bozeman: Oh, there you go.

Bobby: And I found one as we were sitting here. I saw you guys talking, just so people see what this is all about, this is you guys talking to schools. I think I have to put this down and put this one up, because I mean, this is what it is. The two of you up there, in front of kids, inspiring them with your incredible message. So just thank you guys for being here. I know you’ve got Fort Garrison in a couple minutes, so have a great experience with them and good luck with everything you’re doing, and thanks for being us today.

Nikki Bozeman: Yeah.

Bradley Bozeman: Yeah.

Nikki Bozeman: Thank you for having us. We really, really appreciate it.

Bobby: All right, guys.

Nikki Bozeman: Thanks.

Bobby: All right. And with that, we are done for today. Brad Bozeman, Nikki Bozeman, the Bozeman foundation, you can find them at B-R-A-D-N-I-K-K-I-B-O-Z-E-M-A-N dot com. Thank you for everything you all do, and everyone, have a great day.

Nikki Bozeman: Thanks, Bobby.

Bradley Bozeman: Thanks, Bobby.

Bobby: Bye, guys.

Nikki Bozeman: Bye.