The first one is in the books from Saturday at Palisades High for Southern California. The second one for Northern California will be coming up on Feb. 28 at Stagg High in Stockton.
To sign up for the Feb. 28 speed camp in Stockton, CLICK HERE.
A perfect example of why we at Cal-Hi Sports and speed coach Chris Asher of Gold Medal Excellence have decided that conducting a speed camp for young athletes might really help them was displayed on Saturday at Palisades High’s famous Stadium-By-The-Sea.
One of those attending was Justin Johnson, who just completed his sophomore football season at Calabasas. He came to the event and was clocked at 4.97 and 5.04 in the 40-yard dash to begin his day.
Johnson then underwent more than two hours of learning from Asher and other coaches how to start properly, how to drive with his legs properly and how to position every part of his body during a sprint.
Before he left the camp, Johnson was timed again. His 40 had dropped to 4.82. Not all of the campers had the same experience because the second timing is done after a long day, but according to Asher all of them would see improvement if they continue to practice what was learned.
“That’s great and that’s what we’re trying to do with this camp,” said Asher, who has trained NFL players for their 40-yard dash tests and who has coached the USA track and field 4×400 relay team to a world junior championship. “We’re very glad to get this first camp done to see how we can do it better.”
“I didn’t think all the little things can mean even more than lifting weights,” Johnson said of his day. “This reassures me that if I keep working hard, that I’ll continue to get faster.”
Johnson was one of five who came to the event on Saturday to receive “Camper of the Day” certificates. The others were Yusuf Ozcan from the youth ranks, Mary Cooper from Palos Verdes of Palos Verdes Estates among the girls and two other high school boys – Tim Jimenez of Carpinteria and Tyler Webb from St. Monica of Santa Monica.
Jimenez, who already has 160 career tackles for the Warriors in two varsity seasons with one more to go, said he’ll use what he learned both for the upcoming track season and for off-season football conditioning.
“Definitely, improving my form is going to help in track,” he said. “The best part was just how to drive, drive, drive and keep that form down all the way through the run.”
Webb, who is another sophomore, doesn’t play football at St. Monica but with his speed – he had a best of 4.50 in the 40 twice – he was getting encouraged to try.
“Sometimes, just when to look down and look up is all it takes,” he said. “I hope to keep training and get down into the 10s this year in track in the 100.”
Another highlight of the day was watching brothers Quinton Bell and Xavier Bell compete.
Quinton Bell is a freshman at Riverside Community College who placed second in last June’s CIF state track meet in the 100 meters as a senior from Costa Mesa High. He wasn’t recruited for football because he was injured during the 2013 season, but is doing wide receiver workouts with Asher along with some of Asher’s other clients. Quinton, who is nearly 6-foot-3 and weighs 200 pounds, did some 40-yard dash times at 4.49 and 4.50.
Xavier Bell is a sophomore at Mater Dei of Santa Ana, who could be a factor for the Monarchs’ varsity next season. Xavier, who plays running back and safety, clocked 4.64 and 4.68.
Athletes from lacrosse, soccer and cross country all came to the event.
Two other football players to watch next season could be seniors-to-be Blake Young, a defensive lineman from Salesian of Los Angeles, and Chance Childs, a receiver from Paraclete of Lancaster.