The second annual Clinton McDonald Iron Sharpens Iron Youth Football Camp was a major success Saturday at Jacksonville High School.
With better planning and the resume’ of a Super Bowl champion this year, McDonald’s camp grew exponentially from last year. Last year saw fewer than 30 campers attend as the camp was put together on fairly short notice.
This year, the camp had close to 150 elementary age players attend the morning sessions, while nearly another 100 older campers attended the afternoon session.
"Today has been great," said McDonald. "I said last year that this year was going to be better and I know we can get even bigger and better next year."
Campers weren’t just treated to a t-shirt, lunch and some inspirational speeches, they went through some real NFL-level drills as McDonald and the helpers he had with him didn’t take it easy.
Good friend, new Tampa Bay teammate and Pro Bowler Michael Johnson helped with linemen, while fellow Jacksonville native and current Kansas City Chief Demetrius Harris worked on the receivers and defensive backs. Older brother Cleyton McDonald was on hand helping out. McDonald played at Mississippi Valley State and was an NFL prospect before an injury ended that dream. He is currently an Arkansas State Trooper. Former Arkansas Razorback and Green Bay Packer Anthony Lucas was on hand, as well as Clinton’s personal trainer and former teammate at the University of Memphis, Abraham Holloway.
"I always knew I wanted to give back to the community, but I didn’t know how or what I could do," said Clinton. "Having some of this success I’ve had as enabled me to do more and that’s what it’s about. I like to give back. I like to be here. This is where I’m from. It is only by the grace of God that I have this opportunity and I want to make the most of it for as long as I can."