July 6, 2012
While the summer is technically considered offseason for FAU sports, coaches and student-athletes are keeping busy hosting youth and teenage athletes on campus for various camps.
“After three weeks of youth camp, our numbers have grown again this year and we’re looking forward to another successful summer. Our players and coaches have done a really good job keeping the campers busy, they’re working very hard and we are starting to see improvement in their skills from that hard work.”
“Team Camp went well. We had 45 teams, from Orlando to Miami, with the majority of the teams from Palm Beach and Broward counties. Lake Wales High School and Sagemont played for championship, with Sagemont coming away with the championship. Team Camp has been followed by two weeks of Day Camp for boys and girls eight to 16. Approximately 150 children have been attending. The camp places a heavy emphasis on skill development.”
“We had multiple camps this year, which I think is the first time in 10 years that there’s been individualized camps (at FAU). Once we worked through some logistics, with the new staff, it went well. In total, we had about 500 kids on campus (through five different camps: individual, team, youth, linebackers and quarterbacks). One of the things we did – which is a little different than most places I’m familiar with – since individual numbers weren’t as large, we were able to give the campers more one-on-one attention. It was our staff doing the coaching, out there running the drills, as opposed to bringing in other people to do the coaching for us. That’s one of the differences that sets us apart, our coaches being active participants. If a kid comes to our camp, he’s going to get coached by an FAU staff member. It was important for us to establish a camp this year, in terms of being out in the public and have relationships you can’t simulate anywhere else. The kids tell their friends, their coaches get to see what we do, and we establish relationships with local high schools and student-athletes. It’s a good two-way street for everyone involved. We had a unique camp this year, a linebacker school with 30-plus campers ran just from that position perspective. They had lots of individual work, we evaluated it on film and treated them like a college athlete. We think FAU has a ton of things to offer, and sometimes people in this area may not realize that. I feel like these camps provided that avenue.”
“Our first weeks have been very good with 60-plus campers the first week and 90-plus campers the following week. We have had a very good number of campers who were registered for the first week and came back, which is positive feedback. We provide great instructional sessions with small sided game. We have top notch fields, along with use of the FAU cafeteria and pool time. Kids are not just training the game but they are having a blast doing it.”
“We have the day camp, with about 160 kids so far, and then we also have our overnight camp coming up at the end of July with about 75 kids registered already. It’s a great opportunity to get a lot of the local kids in the community out onto our facilities playing, and for some of our players working the camp, it gives them a chance to get some face-to-face contact with the kids. Hopefully in turn it’ll get them to come out to our games in the fall.”
“So far the camps are going great! We usually run between 80-100 kids per week. I always enjoy the look on the campers’ faces when they see our two pools and diving wells. I can tell they can’t wait to run and do a cannonball off the high dive. I have always felt that the camps were a great way to expose the community to our athletic department and facilities. The more we can get them on campus by providing them with a service we hopefully will get them back to support our athletic department for our home games. We finish camps after nine weeks on August 10th at which time we will be excited to transition back and get ready for the college students to arrive soon.”