Dear Coach Dan,
I just had to drop you a few lines to let you know how much this camp has done for my children. I have 3 children and they are participating in the camp. I feel that my children have learned more, not only about basketball, but tools to help them be successful in life, so I am deeply grateful.
My son in particular has had some negative experiences with coaches. To coaches it didn’t seem to matter that he was an honor student and stayed out of trouble. They only saw his height and told him he was too small. After one day of your camp, I saw a difference in his attitude and saw that spark, that belief in coaches again!
He continued to work hard on his game because he really wants to make the J.V. basketball team this year. My son has talked more to me about positive experiences he has had in these few days than any other time. I will forever be grateful to you and your staff. My son has gained the right attitude, confidence and tools to become successful on and off the court. Sincerely, Belinda Horn – Campers Mom 2006
My son Ben Bates attended your basketball camp in Carbondale last week. This was the best camp Ben has ever attended (and he’s attended a lot of sports camps).
From an early age Ben loved baseball and dreamed of playing in the major league. IÕm not sure I ever believed that he could achieve that but I wasn’t about to tell him that he couldn’t either. And he’s had some coaches that did encourage him – none of them have mentioned majors but several have talked about college. He’s also had the other end of the spectrum on coaches – and some fairly recently. When he gets a coach whose interest lies somewhere outside of what is best for Ben, I find myself in the position of trying to keep his dream alive. (I’m willing to let him change his dream but not willing for a coach or anyone else to take it away from him). I want him to be confident but not cocky and I want him to play hard and show respect for the other players, the coaches, and the officials. That’s what I want for him in role models and coaches as well and that’s why I’m so grateful to you for bringing these people to him through the camp. Ben was coached last week by your brother and he made camp so much fun for Ben. I loved what you said to the kids on Saturday about working on the drills and not giving up. That’s what I want Ben to remember when he gets a coach who doesn’t believe in his dream.
I enjoyed watching the camp on Saturday and I hope you continue the camp next year.
Making The Team
I live in a small area in Florida where we do not have a middle school basketball team because we have all the way from 6th grade to 12th grade at the same school. The only thing we can do is try out for JV starting in 7th grade. I tried out last year as a 7th grader but did not make the team. I love basketball and I wanted to get better so after I was cut I started working even harder at home. My mom found out about your camp in Gainesville and I couldn’t wait to come. I learned so much there and was able to practice many new drills afterwards. I just finished trying out for the JV team as an 8th grader and I actually made it. Being the only 13 year old I am the youngest one on the team. I know if I had not come to your camp I would not have made it. I am writing to thank you and everyone else that helped with camp. Without your time and encouragement I think this year would have been like my 7th grade year. I hope you will be coming to do camp again this summer because I can’t wait to learn more to better myself.
O Brien, Florida