Tomlinson makes time for TCU youth camp

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    TCU alumnus and NFL running back LaDanian Tomlinson held his football camp, “CampLT” Monday at the Sam Baugh Indoor Practice Facility. The event, titled “LT’s Challenge” was for kids from kindergarten through fifth grade, and focused on football fundamentals and the life-skills needed in any subject the students choose pursue with their lives.

    Tomlinson helped on a few of the drills, offering advice to the young football players on how to block and throw the football, and spoke with the participants about making good decisions and working hard in life.

    Tomlinson said he always enjoys coming to Fort Worth to participate in the camp because it’s important to have a positive impact on the lives of the children who attend the camp.

    In his four seasons at TCU, Tomlinson led the team to their first bowl win in 41 years in 1998. In his senior season in 2000, he ran over 2,000 yards and won the Doak Walker Award for best running back in the country. He finished his career with 5,263 rushing yards, good for sixth all time in NCAA Division I.

    Tomlinson said he hopes to continue his efforts with the youth after retirement.

    “I think I’d liked to be involved some way,” he said. “I think it’s just a part of me, you know how some people are educators and teachers. How much? I don’t know, but in some way I definitely will be.”

    In addition to the camp, Tomlinson has also been preparing for an NFL season that may not take place because of the ongoing owners’ lockout of the players. Now in his second season with the New York Jets,Tomlinson said the players themselves have had to organize their own workouts because they aren’t allowed to use the teams’ practice facilities.

    While the season is still in question, one thing isn’t for the 32-year-old: his desire to be a Super Bowl champion.

    “I want [a ring] selfishly,” he said. “I’ve dedicated myself to the game so much, I think I deserve to at least get there, even if I don’t get win, I at least want to get there to say that I’ve experienced [the Super Bowl].”

    The running back also said he was proud of the Horned Frogs and the progress the football program has made in the ten years since he graduated.

    “When they went undefeated [and went] to the Rose Bowl, we felt like this is our time,” he said. “I think the TCU family all thought we were going to beat Wisconsin. I don’t know how many people outside of us thought we could, but we felt we were ready to take the next step. It was so exciting. I just felt proud.”

    Tomlinson said he was nervous through the Rose Bowl when he watched from his hotel room.

    “I was under the covers, lights off, just like it was a movie,” he said.

    Tomlinson also said he was perhaps a little jealous of the current players who will get to experience the renovated Amon G. Carter Stadium once construction is complete in 2012.

    “I’m amazed at the change. I wish I can have a chance play at this stadium,” Tomlinson said. “But hey, maybe my son will get to play here.”