One thing that has started to get more popular over the past few years is an underclassmen football combine. As opposed to the Nike Camps and other combines mostly for juniors and a few specific sophomores, underclassmen camps on the other hand are for athletes that are either freshman or sophomores. These camps have however grown and include prep athletes at all ages.
They have started to pop up all throughout the country. The big difference between them and the Nike Camp, outside of the fact that they want to bring in more younger athletes, is that they actually charge for athletes to participate. The Nike Camp brings in athletes and does not make them pay. So does putting money up for the camp make a difference?
The reason to attend a camp that costs money is to get recognition coaches or recruiting experts that are there. The good news is at these camps, can be writers from the likes of Rivals.com, Scout.com, and other similar sites. The information that they get from these camps can possibly be passed onto coaches.
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If money is an issue, I would not recommend going to the camp. There is no reason to spend somewhere around $80 for one day to showcase your skills. If you have done some great things on the football field yourself, maybe you should invest that money into putting a highlight video together.
If money is not an issue and the travel time is limited, then there is no reason to not attend. It will give you a chance to showcase your skills with athletes in your area and see how you stack up. And if you do well enough, you will be on the radar of those working there and that could help you in the long run.
What I feel this boils down to though is the fact that college coaches cannot attend. Overall, it will give you an opportunity to see how you stack up against athletes in your area. But in the end, the level of players attending is limited because of the costs. These camps end up being a money draw for those that run it. That is why they send out so many “personal” invitations. If you have a pulse, consider yourself an elite player who received an invite.
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