For most of us, June marks the end of the school year, beginning of the beach season, and endless hours of sunshine. We look forward to bbq’s and cold drinks, hamburgers and hotdogs. Journeys are concluded with high school/college graduations and others are just beginning with kindergarten orientations. For the HIlltopper Football Family, it means only one thing………. Maroon and White Football Camp!
The Maroon and White 2018 Camp kicked off on a hot and humid Monday afternoon where temperatures hit over 100 degrees on the turf at Tatlock. Those conditions did very little to deter Head Football Coach Kevin Kostibos and the rest of the Hilltopper staff from orchestrating another successful and highly organized 2 day football event for our boys here in Summit.
From beginning to end, the boys, ranging in grades from 4th to 12th, were being instructed by some of the finest coaches in the area, along with speed and condition specialists working on basic motor skills and running fundamentals. Ranging from lateral movement to ball protection, stances and starts, it was a camp full of competitive nature highlighted by the grade-level Tug of War battles. All grades competed in the barbaric feature but the “main event” was the senior class, divided into two teams, battling it out for ownership of the Summit “S” at midfield. Led by Captain Jackson Tyler, this team of senior gridiron greats hurled their counterparts over the “S” in grueling fashion to claim what they forcefully earned, the right to call themselves “camp champs!”
This year’s camp had a little different feel to it, as more competitions were included in the two-day event. Some of the those competitions were O-Line vs. D-Line route running, garbage can football toss, and as mentioned above, the tug of war. However, all eyes and ears were locked in as Summit Hilltopper alum and current NY Giant Ryan O’Malley stopped by to talk to the campers.
“Watching you guys out here brings me back to the days when I competed in this camp.” O’Malley stated. “Playing football for Summit was one of the greatest experiences of my life and I would give anything to put on the Maroon and White one more time.” O’Malley went on to discuss with the campers his journey from Hilltopper to Giant and how his conversation with ex-NFL great Howie Long was career changing. O’Malley explained, “When I was with the Raiders, they brought in Howie Long to talk with us. He told us how there are guys who get after it and guys who are just happy to be on the roster. Whether it’s peewee or the pros, it’s the same message. Which type of football player do you want to be?”
It was great to see over 100 football players running around to kick off the summit football summer. As the on-lookers viewed the drills, competitions, and instruction, it could easily be recognized that this event has become a staple of the community and an opportunity to see Summit Football’s finest.
Check out the video below for an action-packed look at this year’s camp.