More than 900 youngsters showed up to Dak Prescott’s first football camp in the Dallas-Fort Worth area.
Nobody, not even Prescott, would have thought this would have happened a year ago. He sat third on the Dallas Cowboys’ quarterback depth chart, a star at Mississippi State sitting in NFL irrelevancy.
But preseason injuries to Tony Romo and Kellen Moore thrust Prescott into the spotlight, and his celebrity continues to grow after a sensational rookie season. Along with his two-day camp at Lake Dallas High School, Prescott had impressive turnouts earlier in the week with camps in his old college town, Starkville, Miss., and hometown of Haughton, La.
“I didn’t think it would be within a year a thousand kids would show up to a camp,” Prescott said on Sunday. “But I’ve also envisioned being able to do something like this. It’s been an amazing week to be able to start off in Mississippi and have 1,400 kids and go to Haughton where I grew up and have the number we had (750), and then just here with two days and having over 900 kids.”
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Prescott went on to thank others who helped with his DFW camp, including Hall of Fame wide receiver Michael Irvin, Hall of Fame defensive end Charles Haley and current Cowboys receivers Cole Beasley and Ryan Switzer.
The camp’s name served as a reminder of how popular Prescott has become with seemingly every company wanting to be associated with him. The NASCAR-esque camp had four companies in its title — “Citi Dak Prescott Football ProCamp in Partnership with Albertson’s & Tom Thumb presented by adidas.”
Campers, aged first- through eighth-grade, paid $349 for the two-day event that included lectures, fundamental football skills stations, contests and non-contact games. They each received a souvenir autograph from Prescott, a team photo with Prescott and a T-shirt.
“It’s a blessing. It’s humbling just to be a part of this and be able to have my name on top of this camp,” Prescott said. “And just the turnout of the kids and interacting with these guys, this is what it’s about to use my platform to help change their lives or make their days or summers or whatever better to help improve the community in any way I can.
“I want them to set dreams and to dream big. When I was their age, people told me I wouldn’t do what I’m doing today. So, just to set dreams and set goals and not let anyone dictate what you do.”
With his football camps ending over the weekend, Prescott will now shift his attention back to getting ready for his sophomore season in the NFL. He’ll get away from the game for a little bit with a vacation to the beach, but understands his football play is the reason why he’s become an instant star.
The Cowboys depart for training camp in Oxnard, Calif., on July 22, and the first practice is scheduled for July 24.
“Going out and going to a beach somewhere, hang out with the time I needed,” Prescott said. “But also getting ready for football at the same time.”