More than Football: BU Camps Develop Character

Playing football at Bloomsburg University goes much farther than simply excelling at sport; the idea of Bloomsburg Husky Football is to help develop each athlete into a well-rounded human being. In a series of annual summer camps, the coaches and players of the BU Huskies football squad actively apply this ideal, teaching younger athletes not only about football fundamentals, but about individual moral decisions and working as part of a cohesive team.

For every camp, the Huskies incorporate motivational speakers as an integral part of the routine. Touching on subjects such as the importance of academics, dangers of drugs and alcohol, proper social behavior, nutrition habits and much more, each day a different speaker presents a valuable message to all of the campers. The staff hopes that these sessions provide a positive influence and inspiration which can be used in everyday life.

“We want the campers to become better athletes,” said Coach Jack Lydic, Assistant Camp Director for the Huskies. “But there is more to life than just football. Our goal is to lay the groundwork for being a well-rounded individual.”

Love of sport and football is what brings the youths to these camps, and there the Huskies offers a variety of options which serve all aspects and age-ranges of players interested in furthering their football aspirations. They offer a Youth Camp for yonger players, specialty camps that develop specific football skill sets, camps for teams, and a Prospective Athlete Camp for graduating seniors aspiring to play at the next level.

The latest addition to the series of camps is the Defensive Lineman camp organized by Coach Bill Perkins, designed to improve defensive lineman’s techniques and skill sets. Regardless of the skills involved, all members of the Huskies’ coaching staff are available, as well as the coaches from the attending school’s staff.

“We try to get the coaches from the other teams involved in our coaching methods,” said Lydic. “It’s really important to get as many coaches for the kids as we can, so they get proper instruction.” Personal and small group instruction is important as well, with the player to coach ratio at these camps is less than 10:1.

Bloomsburg’s Football staff cares about the quality of instruction that all of their campers get; so they incorporate their own varsity athletes as assistant coaches. Roughly 10-12 of the Huskies’ own athletes are involved annually in the instruction, teaching the campers basic fundamentals, and giving them advice about teamwork and sportsmanship.

Jarrett Pidgeon, three year starter at linebacker for the Huskies, has been attending the Youth Camp that the Huskies offer since his freshman year.

“I think it’s really important for the players to be involved coaching the kids,” said Pidgeon. “When I was a kid we always looked up to the older athletes as role models, it’s only proper that we do the same.”

During the team camp, the Huskies coaching staff has drills in order to test the competitive skills of the athletes, and present awards to those athletes whom excel at their specific position. However, the focus for the youth camp is to collectively promote sportsmanship, team camaraderie, and basic skills of the game.

“The purpose of the team camp is to promote synergy and competition for all teams that attend,” said Coach Lydic. “But the underlying theme for our youth camp is to stress the fundamentals of football and just focus on having fun.”

[box type=”shadow”]For more information on all Bloomsburg University Sports Camps, please visit the BU Camps Website or contact the Camp Directors for individual sports directly. The dates and costs for 2012’s football camps are as follows:

Youth Development Camp, June 11-13: 9:00am-1:00pm $100.00 per camper ($50 for additional siblings)

Defensive Lineman Camp, June 30: 9:00am – 4:00pm, $100.00 per camper

Team Camp July 22-25: $300/camper – Boarding, $225/camper – Commuting[/box]

[box type=”bio”]By Bloomsburg University Student, Dylan Spangler. Dylan is a Junior majoring in Mass Communications.[/box]

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