School puts brakes on Le'Veon Bell as fan's prom date

By Eric DuVall   |   Updated March 18, 2017 at 6:34 PM
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March 18 (UPI) -- Pittsburgh Steelers running back Le'Veon Bell honored a bet with a Wisconsin fan to be her prom date, but the girl's school won't allow him to attend because he violates district's age policy.

The story began when lifelong Steelers fan Ava Tarantino met Bell at a game last season. The two began following each other on Twitter. Last week Tarantino tweeted Bell a bet, that if her message could be retweeted 500 times, Bell would have to be her prom date. He responded "600 and it's a deal."

Tarantino, 17, exceeded the number within a few hours and Bell responded, "wellll a deal's a deal ... I'll see youu at your prom."

Officials at Waukesha West High School put the brakes on the dream date because the 25-year-old running back violates a longstanding district policy regarding the age of prom dates. Officials said they have had to enforce the rule before and had to be "equitable."

The district also said Bell is also in violation of a policy prohibiting dates who have been arrested for underage drinking or drug use. Bell was charged with unlawful possession of marijuana in 2014, which netted him a two-game suspension.

The district did say Bell could attend events outside the prom itself, including the school's pre-prom photo session and parade.

Tarantino's father, Jim, said he hoped the school would make an exception for Bell because the nature of his attendance is as a celebrity, not a normal prom date. (Bell has said he intends to bring his family along for the trip.)

"I'm hoping we can come to something that would be beneficial for everybody," Jim Tarantino said.

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