There isn’t a summer event in the country quite like the Adidas Sound Mind Sound Body Football Academy.
Brady Hoke & Mark Dantonio will speak together on player safety and tackling at this year's Sound Mind Sound Body Football Academy.
Presented by the Lifting As We Climb Foundation, the event will be rocking at Southfield (Mich.) High with some of the biggest names in college football, along with some of the nation’s top talent heading to the Detroit area.
Set to take place on June 14-15, event director Curtis Blackwell adds a new wrinkle every year to make the great affair even better.
“This year we’re using the platform to talk about player safety and really emphasize with the Sound Mind,” Blackwell said. “We have Brady Hoke and Mark Dantonio collaborating to talk about concussions and talk tackling with a video presentation together.
“The University of Michigan staff is going to do a tackling circuit on the field to show safe tackling and player safety, and I think it’s going to go well with the high school coaches and players attending. They’re going to engage the guys and talk real issues that are affecting the entire sport, not just the NFL but high school, youth leagues, everything.
“It speaks volumes to have the states two biggest rivals collaborate to talk football.”
The safety presentation isn’t the only thing speaking volumes about the SMSB Football Academy.
Campers will get a chance to learn from, get coached up by, and perhaps earn a scholarship offer from college coaches in attendance. Besides Michigan’s Hoke and Michigan State’s Dantonio, Blackwell said that Wisconsin coach Gary Andersen and several of his staff members will be on hand. Ohio State will send several coaches. Urban Meyer spoke last year and Blackwell said he could be back again.
Five Mid-American Conference head coaches will attend in Western Michigan’s P.J. Fleck, Eastern Michigan’s Ron English, Central Michigan’s Dan Enos, Bowling Green’s Dave Clawson and Kent State’s Paul Haynes.
Top100 CB Damon Webb, seen here at last year's showcase, put on a show for the coaches from Michigan, Michigan State and Ohio State. They all offered.
Morgan State’s head coach Donald Hill-Eley will be in town as well as many Division-I assistant coaches, several Division-II programs on down. High school football players of all abilities will get a chance to earn a potential opportunity to play college football. Last year, current Ohio State Top100 cornerback commit Damon Webb’s performance earned him scholarship offers from Michigan, Michigan State and the Buckeyes.
“I think the number one thing is, this program exposes high school students to big-time college football in a way no other camp in America can,” Blackwell said. “I’m proud to see everyone put everything aside for one weekend and work together for the good of the game. Everyone wants to win. Coaches coming out here show there is a lot of talent in the Midwest and that they can develop that talent. It’s not a 7on7 tournament. It’s an instructional based camp to help these young boys get better and give them the knowledge they need to get better.
“College coaches leading all the drills, every player wants to learn from a college coach, as every player wants to play college football.”
Among the big names that competed last year were Michigan commits Shane Morris, Jourdan Lewis, Csont’e York, David Dawson, Logan Tuley-Tillman and Khalid Hill. Notre Dame was represented by receiver commit James Onwualu. Michigan State commits Dennis Finley, Jon Reschke and Demetrius Cooper also worked out.
This year’s roster already has exciting players expected to attend and the list will only grow with talent leading up to the showcase. Webb will be back to show what he can do along with Michigan State commits Enoch Smith Jr. and Matt Sokol. 247Composite five-star Malik McDowell, Michigan Top247 defensive end commit Lawrence Marshall will be on-hand, as will Top247 quarterback Michael O'Connor, who is expected to announce his college decision this Saturday. Other Top247 players listed are linebacker Nyles Morgan, receiver Allen Lazard, defensive end Dewayne Hendrix and Minnesota running back commit Jeff Jones. Several other BCS prospects in the class-of-2014 in offensive tackle Frank Ragnow, center J.C. Hassenauer, defensive tackle David Beedle, linebacker Parris Bennett, receiver Avonte Maddox and cornerback Jalen Embry will be there according to Blackwell. Several very talented 2015s in defensive end/outside linebacker Jashon Cornell, receiver/safety Brian Cole, running back Jacques Patrick, athlete Eric Glover-Williams, running back Michael Weber and quarterback Jayru Campbell will be there as well.
Campers will begin arriving on Thursday where they will have a meet and greet with the Detroit Lions 2013 rookie draft class. There will be a barbecue and skills challenge that evening before the showcase kicks off on Friday and runs through Saturday.
Others interested in participating can register at on the Lifting As We Climb website linked here.