To whom much is given, much will be required. That is why for one day each of the last four years, free agent NFL quarterback Jason Campbell devotes his time to helping the next generation of players free of charge.
“I think the more and more you live life, the more and more you have to find out that you have to be very unselfish, and a lot of that is you have to give your time up and to come out here and help someone else, and give kids the opportunity to be able to achieve their dreams,” says Campbell.
Once upon a time their dreams were also his dream, one he realized out of Taylorsville High School well over a decade ago.
Now the 10-year NFL pro is on the back end of his career, looking ahead to his next passion in life.
“The reason we started it cause you know you also have to start preparing for life after football, and I know someday you have to hang the cleats up,” says Campbell. “I’ve been blessed to play 10 years. You know my next passion is working with youth kids, and so this is something that we want to kind of grow and continue to make it better and better each year, and it’s just something to get the kids something to look forward to so as long as we’re able to do it and people have the time we’ll try to keep it going.”
So far finding volunteers to help facilitate the FCA clinic has not been a problem.
This year around 50 local coaches came out in full force, and they were still outnumbered by more than 200 kids ages 7-17.
Overall more than 30 schools were represented, marking the camp’s largest turnout since 2012.
“I really appreciate those high school coaches a whole bunch coming out and doing this on their Saturday that don’t have to,” says Taylorsville head football coach Matt Caldwell. “Jason putting this on for these kids in this area means a lot to them.”
“It’s really helped me focus on doing what I have to do to make it,” says Taylorsville sophomore wide receiver and defensive back Malik Strickland.
“It feels good, just to see somebody from Taylorsville out here showing that, and they’re showing we can all make it if we put our head to it,” says Laurel senior middle linebacker Travion Evans.
“I think the one thing I take away from today is how much love the kids have for you, and I think that’s just something they come up and grab on you,” says Campbell. “Just to me, how much they mean to me and how much I mean to them, I think is the most important thing is just the love atmosphere that you get from being around the kids.”