POTSDAM - Cincinnati Bengals Running Back Brian Leonard will return to his home region to host his 5th Annual Youth Football Camp from June 28-July 1.
The Brian Leonard Football Camp, for young players entering grades 1 through 12, will be held for the second year at SUNY Potsdam.
Leonard, a Gouverneurnative and graduate of Gouverneur High School, held his first camp in 2008 in central New Jersey. In 2009, the former Rutgers University football star moved his camp to his home region because opportunities were limited for youth to participate in football programs and summer camps. Last year, nearly 100 campers were able to participate. Leonards goal is to provide an outstanding camp experience for young athletes who have limited football opportunities. He feels that a positive camp experience promotes the game of football and in turn motivates campers to continue participating in the sport.
The Leonard Camp curriculum focuses on key elements to enrich the program, and to achieve them, Leonard takes a hands-on approach to his camp. He participates in the daily camp sessions, teaching the skills that propelled him to a successful career in high school, college, and the NFL. The camp has three objectives: (1) to educate the campers in fundamental football skills in an environment that is both enjoyable and safe, with non-contact play; (2) to utilize the expertise of top-level high school and college coaches who have demonstrated exemplary dedication to teaching youth and promoting good sportsmanship; and (3) to provide a program that produces measurable results.
Leonard has invited fellow NFL players to join him at camp to further enrich the campers experience. In both 2010 and 2011, Trevor Scott, Defensive End for the New England Patriots, attended the camp as a guest coach. Scott was a football star at Potsdam High School and The State University of New York at Buffalo. He and Leonard were once high school rivals but now share the goal of supporting youth football activities in their community.
A significant number of campers have been recognized for their contributions to their teams. Derrek Dalton, a 2011 Brian Leonard Football Camp MVP from Indian River High School, was selected as a Class A First Team All-State Offensive Lineman. The 2011 Watertown Daily Times All-North Football Team included Dalton as well as Shane Gould and Mark Horne from Gouverneur High School, and Jay Proulx from Canton High School. Shane Gould also received the Section 10 Don Petty Award given to the player in the section that best exemplifies hard work, character, and sportsmanship on and off the field.
In addition, Camp Director Dan Duddy, the Head Football coach at Monsignor Donovan High School in Toms River, New Jersey, was named as the 2011 All-Star Catholic High School Coach of the Year by Chicago-based Sports Faith International.
The camp offers both overnight and day camp options at SUNY Potsdam, 44 Pierpont Avenue, Potsdam. Daily sessions run from 8:30 a.m-3 p.m. The cost of the camp is $245 for the Day Camp and $475 for the Overnight Camp.
For the second year, the camp will also offer a Youth Coaching Clinic for youth football coaches. This years clinic will be held on Saturday, June 30from 11:15 a.m.-5:45 p.m. Participants will have the opportunity to interact with the Brian Leonard Football Camp coaching staff. The cost for the program is $50.00. Contact information is the same as above.
The Brian Leonard Football Camp is operated by the Toms River-based, Elite Camp Services (ECS). Shawn Kennish, President of ECS, is the former director of football operations at Rutgers University. ECS also operates the Shores Best Football Camp, currently in its fifth year.