Friday night lights will be alive and well tomorrow at Aloha Stadium as a bunch of former Rainbow Warriors get together to put on a free clinic for high school quarterbacks and receivers.
The 808 Passing Academy is a non-profit camp started by former University of Hawaii quarterback Sean Schroeder last year after seeing the soaring prices families were paying to send their kids to camps on the mainland.
“Football, for me and all the coaching staff, played a big role in our lives," said Schroeder. "It allowed us to get an education, but football also allowed us to get an education on and off the field. We want to give those opportunities to kids behind us, pay it forward so to speak, and give opportunities to the next generation.”
With the help of individual donors, the California native will foot the bill for the 150 prep players participating.
“My two years here left an indelible impression on me. The people I met in the community, the culture of Hawaii is so special. It felt like home even though I only spent two years, it really just stayed with me. I want to make it home again and I wanted to give back.”
Along with quarterback guru Vince Passas, former Warriors Jeremy Higgins, Cayman Shutter, Jeremiah Cockheran, Jeremiah Ostrowski, Garrett Gabriel and Ricky Lumford will be instructors, as will ex-Notre Dame wide receiver Robby Toma and former Eastern Illinois quarterback Andrew Manley.
“It’s really about preparation," said Shutter, a state champion quarterback at Punahou before attending UH. "If you can prepare and know what you have coming in front of you then you have a much higher chance of succeeding and showcasing your talent. These camps you visit on the mainland are a one time or two time chance. You’re going to invest a lot of money in a trip and you’re not going to get much of a look, you’re not going to get many reps, so the ones that you do get, you have to make them count.”
Schroeder's goal is to make the camp an annual tradition, and with the help of sponsors grow it into something bigger.
“Maybe make it a multi-day event. Maybe one day is more of an invite only, Elite-11 kind of model in Hawaii, and maybe we open it up to more positions," said Schroeder. "We want to continue to build off momentum we had last year and now this year. It seems like there definitely is a need for a camp like this here in Hawaii.”
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