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Paul Murphy / Eyewitness News
Email: pmurphy@wwltv.com | Twitter: @pmurphywwl

NEW ORLEANS -- Some lucky students at the Isidore Newman school in Uptown New Orleans got a lesson on how to be a champion from Super Bowl champion kicker Garrett Hartley from the New Orleans Saints.

'Just getting out and having fun with your friends, being respectful of others around you, you're teachers as well,' Hartley told kids gathered on the school's football field

Hartley's advice is very timely as the NFL investigates allegations of bullying and menacing messages from one Miami Dolphin offensive lineman to another.

Richie Incognito is accused of sending Jonathan Martin a barrage of vicious and racist comments. Martin may have also been the victim of hazing from other teammates.

Incognito was suspended indefinitely for alleged conduct detrimental to the team.

Hartley said teammates are there to build you up, not tear you down, and in the locker room character counts.

'Your attitude, your poise and just how you go about everyday operations as far as showing up, practicing, getting your lifts in, watching film and just sticking together,' he said.

The bullying scandal was the topic of discussion in chapel Tuesday morning at John Curtis Christian School in River Ridge.

Coach J.T. Curtis called it a teachable moment for his students and football players.

'In the athletic arena, there's a lot of teasing, horse-play if you will. When it gets personal, that's when it needs to end,' said Curtis. 'I don't care what team it is, there's no place for one person to be intimidated by words or the actions of another person.'

Curtis said it's now up to the NFL to make a strong statement against bullying.

'The National Football League now has a chance to step in and and say there's no place for this in the National Football League at the highest level of competition that we have in our country. We're not going to accept it.'

Curtis junior Free Safety Hunter Dale said players should let their play on the field do the talking, not hurtful words.

'If people don't know the boundaries, now that this is all over SportsCenter, now people know this could really effect somebody's life,' said Dale. 'People should really step up and tell people to stop and you really shouldn't do it at all.'

Tulane University Head Coach Curtis Johnson, a former Saints assistant coach, said the Miami bullying scandal is an isolated incident.

'I've never been around anything like I've heard of what I've seen,' said Johnson. 'I never knew that, that even existed.'

Johnson said there's a reason why bullying is not widespread in the league.

'When you get to the NFL, there's one thing that they want to do, they want to win. It's about winning and losing and if you play 10 years and you can't help them win anymore, they're going to get rid of you.'

Curtis said Richie Incognito should now be tossed out of the NFL.

'This is not his first incident,' said Curtis. 'This is not the first correction that he has had. For whatever reason, he hasn't gotten the message.'

Back at Newman, Hartley told students it best to remember the golden rule.

'It goes back to (treating others) how you want to be treated.'

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