That’s how 140 kids spent their second week out of school as they gathered at Kimball High’s Don Nicholson Stadium for four days of workouts, drills, practice and non-contact games.
It’s the second year that Kimball High varsity head coach Steve Anastasio has hosted the camp, with help from his varsity players and the junior varsity and freshman coaches.
“It’s just a way for us to provide something for kids in our community,” Anastasio said. “That’s the number-one goal, just to let kids know that we’re here and have them come out and have a good time.”
The local camps are also a learning process for the varsity players, who go through a day of workouts and drills themselves before the camp. Kimball senior Logan Finley enjoyed the chance to be a coach and teacher for his two younger brothers, Kyle and Trevor, and their teammates from the Tracy Cougars.
“We’re building the future and we’re part of influencing these young people, so I’m excited,” he said. “We can be mentors to them and teach them to be comfortable with the game.”
He added that it helps build a larger football family around the Jaguar team.
“It’s cool when you’re out here Friday nights and you see the kids wearing your numbers and holding up signs.”
Kimball junior Val Finau added that he looks forward to seeing the kids at the camp continue to grow in the game, even as far as college and the NFL.
“It’s great because these guys get to learn fundamentals. We get up here and make it easy for them,” he said.
Jaguars JV coach Steve Wichman added that the teaching creates a valuable bond between the older and younger players.
“It means a lot for these young players, because they look up to these older guys who play high school football,” he said. “It gives these (older) players a chance to see what it looks like when some of these players need help, and that they have the tools and knowledge to provide that help.”
Summertime brings a host of other camps, with the registration fees for campers going to support the teams that host the camps. Anastasio said he set up the camp last year so that it wouldn’t conflict with the Tracy and West football camps, so it turns out that youngsters can go to all three camps if they want.
Tracy High’s camp will be from Tuesday, June 19, to Thursday, June 21, at Tracy High’s Wayne Schneider Stadium, and West High’s camp will be the next week, Monday, June 25 to Wednesday, June 27, at Steve Lopez Stadium. Both camps cost $40 and will be from 6 to 8 p.m.
More information on summertime sports camps can be found in the Sports Datebook, and at www.tracypress.com/pages/sports.