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I am newer to covering the 49ers than most of my media colleagues, but I have been a fan my entire life. My first “foot in the door” gig covering the Niners was to go to Patrick Willis’ ProCamp. For those of you who don’t know, ProCamps is an organization that facilitates kids spending a day, sometimes two, with their favorite athlete. Upwards of 300 kids at a time attend camp, which is an organizational feat in itself. The kids are broken up into smaller groups, do warms ups, drills and even play in scrimmages. The campers get a chance to interact one on one with the pro athlete featured at the camp. My first ProCamp was also Patrick Willis’ first ProCamp. 


At the start of the camp the player addresses the entire group and there is usually a Q&A and trivia about the player. The campers age range is 5-12 for most camps, 5-18 for others. As a result, some of the kids know everything about the athlete and others, simply know the team they play on. What impressed me the most was Patrick’s message to the campers. He talked about how being from Bruceton, Tennessee, he had really wanted to be attend the University of Tennessee. 

"They didn’t want me, but when someone doesn't want you, that doesn't mean you give up on wanting to go to school or wanting to pursue your dream, that just means you find a way to go get it somewhere else. That worked out at Ole Miss, they gave me a full ride and that's where I went, and here I am years later." 

Willis also talked to the Campers about thanking the people that brought them to the camp, and what a great opportunity it is to be able to go to a program like ProCamps. He touched on his childhood a little bit and thanked everyone in the crowd himself. 

Patrick Willis is an anomaly. He is humble and grateful while being incredibly talented. He had every opportunity to take the wrong path during his challenging childhood (link to his E:60 piece), but did not. I consider myself very lucky to have had the opportunity to meet with Patrick and wish him the best in his retirement. He will be missed. 
 


Comments

08/22/2015 11:21pm

The educated girls should help them and give them their education that they also able to get good jobs in the society. All the good and multinational companies hire educated girls in their companies.

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The campers get a chance to interact one on one with the pro athlete featured at the camp.

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06/12/2016 1:17am

Meet with the team of Patrick Willis who is an experienced trainer and have done some wonderful stuff in all over the world. Take a look on that blog post and share your thoughts about it.

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07/18/2016 4:21am

Wow, he is pretty strong! I like this post.

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