Eli Manning: The LSHOF Junior Training Camp is a Fun Tradition for Area Children!

Over three hundred young people from throughout the area enjoyed a day of sports fun at the 2023 LSHOF Junior Training Camp held on NSU’s campus this Saturday, July 29. Several newly inducted Hall of Fame members, assisted by coaches and players from NSU’s football, and men’s, and women’s basketball teams, put the young people through a series of drills in football and basketball skills. This is the twelfth year the training camp has been held in Natchitoches. Over the years, the Junior Training Camp has become an eagerly awaited tradition for area families.

Players and staff from NSU men’s and women’s basketball teams conducted a series of fast paced drills that kept the campers on their feet and moving as they learned and sharpened their skills. The campers then moved on to Turpin stadium where the NSU football team, joined by visiting Grambling QB Myles Crawley, awaited with a field full of practice drills. The NSU gridiron squad was joined by 2023 LA Sports Hall of Fame inductee and NFL legend, Eli Manning. Each and every child attending the camp got to catch a pass from a Super Bowl winning quarterback and one of the game’s all time greats.

The Natchitoches Sheriff’s Department has been a sponsor of the event since the inaugural camp and brought several deputies who were joined by the Natchitoches SWAT team and their vehicle. Likewise, volunteers from Natchitoches Leadership Through Athletics helped check in children and pass out souvenir camp shirts. Raising Cane’s supplied sweet tea and lemonade to thirsty campers as well as certificates for a free meal. Thanks to the sponsors, the children enjoyed a fun day of physical activity and education at no cost.

The Natchitoches Parish Journal would like to commend the members of the NSU men’s and women’s basketball and football teams who helped at each of the stations. They were unfailingly helpful and gracious to the children. These young men and women embody everything that is right and good about the student-athlete concept. NSU’s WRAC staff turned their facility over to the campers and supplied water for breaks. They and the teams were superb ambassadors for Northwestern State University.