First-year Head Football Coach Cedric Thomas of the University of Arkansas at Pine Bluff Golden Lions will hold a football camp Sunday at War Memorial Stadium in Little Rock.
This event is being called the "Monster Camp," with 10-12 Division I coaches expected to be in attendance. Not only will they be in attendance but they'll be coaching and scouting at the same time.
Schools that have been listed to have coaches in attendance are TCU, Alcorn State, Texas Southern, Tennessee State, UT-Martin, SE Missouri, Missouri State and UAPB.
Thomas said he feels this event will help give the UAPB brand some exposure, but at the same time, he wants to be able to give the kids a chance to showcase their abilities.
"That's the biggest thing," Thomas said about giving kids an opportunity. "Where I came from you don't get a lot of schools to come to the area, and you can get overlooked. To be able to get in and get 10-12 coaches in one place to see where you are is big for the kids. It also gets the UAPB brand out there. My coaching staff will be working, and we'll be able to build relationships. It's for the kids who haven't had the chance and it gives them an opportunity. Of course we would love to get all the top notch kids that we can, but I'm not selfish by a long shot."
"Schools will have representatives from their coaching staff to not only evaluate the camp but also help out. Those are places that have reached out to us and with the number of kids that we're having it's going to be a lot of scouts there. We're not just trying to put on a show for the UAPB coaching staff. We're giving a lot of kids a shot. It's an opportunity for guys to get looked at, possibly get their schooling paid for, and that's just who I am, I'm all for it."
As far as the logistics part of the camp, the athletes will be measured, they'll run a 40-yard dash, they'll broad jump, run the NFL L drill, and do a short shuttle.
Also, they'll do individual drills and get tutelage from a number of coaches. There will also be a portion where they get to compete against each other in particular drills.
"I think it's huge not only for the UAPB brand but also big for the state," Thomas said. "When we're talking about changing the culture this goes with that, and now you get to see what the UAPB brand is about. We get a chance to fellowship with high school coaches and parents. It's a foundation for the future and it'll only get bigger."
Walk-ups are being expected, and the check-in time for walk-ups is 10 a.m. Check-in for those already registered is scheduled for 11 a.m. The camp will start at noon and last until 4 p.m.