The Mensch List: Putting Sunday sports in play


Nowhere in the Torah does it say: “And on the seventh day, God played soccer.” Which is too bad for observant Jewish youths who would love to take advantage of the many local sports leagues that play on Saturdays.

Fortunately, there are Dr. Matthew Lefferman and Eric Weissman. These two members of the Modern Orthodox congregation B’nai David-Judea in Pico-Robertson have worked tirelessly to ensure the presence of Sunday sports games locally.

“People are delighted to know that there is an opportunity for their kids to participate in athletic opportunities and still practice their Judaism as they want to,” said Weissman, 38, a father of two.

The pair have taken a three-pronged approach. Both men coach with the American Youth Soccer Organization (AYSO), which already had Sunday games. Lefferman, who coaches two teams, has acted as an unofficial liaison to help recruit Sunday players, coaches and referees.

They also lobbied Beverly Hills Little League to create a Sunday division, then helped structure and run it. Now they sit on its board.

In order to further expand opportunities for Jewish youths, they formed the nonprofit Maccabee Athletic Club (MAC) a year ago. It started with a club soccer team and this year is expanding to basketball and flag football. 

Story continues after the video.