On Super Bowl Sunday they swerved, ran, threw and caught – not the Patriots and Falcons – local kids from areas like City Heights, North Park, Skyline and Lincoln Park who were training for the Guy Jackson Football Camp.
“This is a way to keep them in shape, and to build up their agility and to make sure they don’t forget what the football game is all about, build some extra skills,” Debra Portee, board member and fitness instructor for the Guy Jackson Football Camp, says.
Sunday’s practice was a way for the players to stay motivated until the annual camp this summer. The camp is free to inner city kids ages four to eighteen. At least 25 kids from southeast San Diego took to the field Sunday.
“A lot of kids come from single family homes,” Portee says, “so this a good way for them to come out and build a good resource and foundation for them because sometimes maybe their home life may not be such a good one, and this is a way to release some of that frustration, and also build up some of that community with other people.”
Many of the kids play football at their school or for other leagues, and are serious about the sport.
"It's a way to help my mom out,” Huitzy Cantabarne, a freshman at Madison High School, says. “I want to go to college to pursue my dream of being a football player. I just want to make my mom proud. Mostly, a lot of the players out here, that's what they want to do."