Five incoming freshman football players are in Canton this week
A group of five soon to be freshmen at Camdenton High School have been selected to attend USA Football’s National Team Development Games presented by Shock Doctor in Canton, Ohio. The event is June 30 through July 5 at Walsh University.
Harrison Brownell, Wes Buckner, Jay Griffin, Grant Norton and Jesse Walker will be some of more than 180 incoming eighth-grade and freshman athletes participating in this event, joining an elite group of football players from across the United States.
Brownell is an offensive/defensive lineman. Buckner and Norton are at the camp to play on the offensive line. Griffin is playing at defensive back during the camp and Walker is playing tight end/wide receiver.
The five players will have the opportunity to earn a roster spot on the U.S. National Team that will compete against Canada in the International Bowl.
The U.S. National Development Games are not considered an all-star event by the NCAA or NFHS as they serve as the key evaluation event for the national team selection.
The program was built to allow the best athletes across the county to compete on the field in order to gain exposure, develop their skills and fundamentals and compete for a spot on the U.S. National Team.
U.S. National Team participants are chosen based on talent and character. Players will compete in a 7-on-7 tournament, jamboree and full length games.
Players will learn USA Football’s Heads Up Football player health and safety curriculum featuring proper equipment fitting, concussion education, heat preparedness, hydration education and proper tackling techniques.
USA Football scouts will evaluate the talent and ultimately build the U.S. National Team rosters. Scouts will also compile a list of top prospects from each event that will be distributed to every college football program in the country.
Because this is a national team event, current NCAA coaches are granted permission from the NCAA to serve as instructors at the National Development Games.
This provides an excellent opportunity for the athletes in attendance to work first hand with college coaches as well as former NFL players and top area high school coaches.
Brownell’s father, Rodney, says that he discovered the opportunity on Facebook and followed the link to discover information about a regional camp being held in Kansas City on May 10-11.
The regional camps were used to determine which players would get an invitation to Canton this week. At the regional events, players were put through drills, met coaches and received thorough education about the college recruitment process.
Rodney says that Harrison impressed well enough at the camp that he received an email confirming his selection just three days later.
Among the activities that the boys will be involved in this week are more education on college recruitment and expectations, 7-on-7 drills, position-specific drills and live game action.
The boys will also enjoy a tour of the Pro Football Hall of Fame.