Alex Langenderfer, 10, Perrysburg, lands on crash pads after catching a pass during a drill at football camp as camp counselor Scott Freeman, a senior on the Perryburg High School football team, watches.
Jax Hudson, who will be in sixth grade next month, wants to be a wide receiver for the Perrysburg High School football team in a few years and this week he got to work with one of the favorite team‘s leading receivers, Seth Durham.
For four days this week, Jax and about 50 other fourth, fifth, and sixth graders took part in the annual football camp run by high school coaches and several players provided by the city of Perrysburg recreation department at the Perrysburg Junior High School football stadium.
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“We’ve learned drills and I‘m able to catch a little bit better,” Jax said. “I’ve learned how to be a better wide receiver and get away from cornerbacks better.”
Next week, the camp will be for seventh and eighth graders again at Perrysburg Junior High School. It is run by the Perrysburg recreation department and costs $55 for city residents and $110 non-city residents. About 50 have signed up.
Both camps teach similar basic skills and drills, said Matt Kregel, Perrysburg High varsity football head coach.
“It is important to teach skills and tackling with your head up and a way to avoid concussions,” Kregel said. “We do not instruct them to tackle with the face or helmet.”
He said the children go through the same footwork, quarterback, lineman, and defensive drills that his varsity team goes through. By the time Kregel gets them on the high school teams, he wants them to know how to do the drills.
Durham, a senior wide receiver and corner for the varsity squad, helped coach Jax‘s team in a seven-on-seven drill near the end of the camp on Wednesday. He said it is great to be able to give back and help teach what older Perrysburg players he looked up to taught him at a young age.
Several key players who went to such a camp and now are helping to coach at this camp are quarterback Gus Dimmerling, defensive players Quinn Thomas and Kyle Recker, and lineman Cale Bonner.
“We used to be those kids looking up to the older players,” he said.
The city recreation department will hold a boys basketball camp next week for ages 7-13 and cheerleading and track and field camps near the end of the month. The basketball and track camps will be at the Municipal Park, the cheerleading camp will be on the soccer fields off State Rt. 199. The city’s website has a link for more information on camps at www.ci.perrysburg.oh.us.
Contact Matt Thompson at: firstname.lastname@example.org, 419-356-8786, or on Twitter at @mthompson25.