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NFL Players Teach Aspiring Players Football Fundementals

By Megan Anderle - WaynePatch

 

How many opportunities will your child have to play on a field with their favorite players from the New York Giants or Jets, throwing a football or practicing offensive tactics?

National Football League (NFL) players Terrell Thomas, a cornerback for the Giants, Kris Jenkins, defensive tackle for the Jets and Victor Cruz, a wide receiver for the Giants, gave 240 aspiring football stars this opportunity at a 4-day summer camp hosted by Sports International at William Paterson University.

The campers, ages 7 to 18, come from all over the country – as far as Texas, Michigan and Missouri – to train with their favorite players.

“They’re all really excited to be here, I see it in their eyes,” said Cruz, who grew up in Paterson. “Being from the area, it’s nice to be here with them.”

Cruz, along with the coaches, said they found the players’ enthusiasm rewarding.

“I’m down with the younger kids because of their enthusiasm,” Leo Haggerty, a coach at the camp, said. “We’ve had a couple from the Jacksonville camp go on to do professional stuff. We give them discipline, and teach them what it’s like to be part of a team.”

When the campers arrive, they are evaluated on day one and subsequently assigned to a coach who gives them one-on-one training based upon their position, from quarterback to linebacker. The campers participate in three practices a day. The coaches lecture and demonstrate the group on strategies and techniques.

Sports international Football Camp, which has run throughout the nation since 1983, has been at William Paterson for the last four years. It was rated among the top 10 summer instructional camps in the nation by Perform Magazine.  

“Enrollment has been steady, which is indicative of the quality of the camp,” Jeff Griffin, a camp director said.

This year, a speed training camp came on the Wednesday to work with the players. On Saturday, which is the last day, the National College Sports Association (NCSA) will come to discuss college recruitment with the players and their parents.

Kim Maner, whose twin sons, Jalen and Brandon Belrose, 10, are enrolled in the camp for the second year in a row, came all the way from Plattsburg, Missouri to attend.

“They improve tremendously over the course of the week,” Maner said. “The coaches are very firm with the kids – it’s serious here. There’s a reason we come all the way from Plattsburg to send our kids to this camp.”

The camp is pricey, for example, to dorm at the college during the camp, from, Wednesday to Saturday, tuition is $780. For commuters, it’s $670.

Terri DeRiso, of East Rutherford, New Jersey, who enrolled her son, Tanner, for the first time this year, said he loved it.

“He’s excited to come back every day,” DeRiso said. “The supervision is great, and it’s a very well-organized camp.”

Peter Rizzolo, of Randolph, said his son, Nicholas, will probably want to come back next year.

“As long as he gives me 100 percent, I’m happy,” Rizzolo said.

Publish Date : 07-08-2011
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