• Camp 54 exposes young men to effort and success
By Jim Wallace

Youngsters learned football basics from some pros Saturday morning.
Jasper Brinkley, linebacker for the Minnesota Vikings, headed up the fifth year of Camp 54 at Thomson High School.
Close to a dozen helped Brinkley conduct the free 3-hour camp for close to 150 at the Bulldogs’ practice fields.
“It was great to have some of the players that came up with me and some of the coaches help with the camp,” said Brinkley. “Coach Billy Elmore who coached me in little league, Coach John Barnett, who coached me at high school and others – they all wanted to help me give back to the community.”
Brinkley said coaches and players from the Bulldogs also helped with the effort.
The camp gave the young men big people they could look up to and learn from, according to Brinkley.
“It gives them a doorway to learn,” Brinkley said. “They know my situation and where I came from. I’ve been in the same classrooms they’ve been in and they can see how I have utilized my opportunities and I can encourage them to utilize theirs.”
Businesses in the community, as well as the NFL, helped Brinkley set up the camp.

To read more on this story, pick up the Thursday, June 12, edition of The McDuffie Progress.





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