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Flanagan hosts second annual camp

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By Sam Draut

Sean Flanagan’s Elite Performance Football Training Camp is back for its second year.

There wasn’t a single participant that attended the inaugural camp that couldn’t say at the end of each day that they didn’t learn something new or didn’t feel like they got better, Flanagan said.

The former Oldham County football star and University of Tennessee linebacker, who won a national title, two South Eastern Conference championships and played alongside Peyton Manning, hosted 30 to 40 football players from the ages of eight to 18 for a weeklong camp last summer at the OCYFL fields.

Once again, the camp is set up for its second year with familiar faces mixed with several new coaches as well. Billy Ratliff, a defensive tackle on the 1998 National Championship team who coach Phil Fulmer later named an award after, is back to coach the defensive line.

“Billy, who was an All-American at Tennessee, gets asked to do camps all across the country,” Flanagan said. “But he just does mine and his.”

Jacob Russell, a former Anderson County star, who went on to play football at University of Kentucky, Eastern Kentucky University and Campbellsville University will join the camp’s coaching staff.

“Adding him is great to the mix,” Flanagan said.

The camp is premised around giving football players in Oldham County and surrounding areas an opportunity that may not be accessible for them.

“Most of these kids in Oldham County don’t get one-on-one instruction unless they go to one of the bigger camps in Kentucky,” Flanagan said. “We want to bring attention to the talent level in Oldham County.”

Flanagan believes there are plenty of talented athletes in Oldham County that aren’t recognized nationally.

“All of the coaches do a fantastic job getting these kids fundamentally sound and prepared with the talent that they have,” Flanagan said. “I don’t feel like we get the national attention that we deserve.”

“I want to bring attention to Oldham County and the surrounding counties like Carroll, Henry, Trimble and even Jefferson, because it has been lacking,” he said.

Flanagan plans to bring in guest speakers like Shawn Johnson, who played at Trinity (Louisville) and University of Tennessee and Aaron Nance, who played at Seneca and the University of Louisville, to show campers it’s possible to make it to a higher level if hard work is established.

After being held in the early afternoon last year, Flanagan decided to move the camp to mornings this summer to allow high school participants enough time to recover for practices at night.

“Our goal isn’t to be wearing them out,” Flanagan said. “Our goal is to improve their fundamentals, quickness, agility and speed.”

Following an opening speaker and warm ups, the campers will break into individual position groups for one-on-one instruction, which will benefit individual fundamentals.

“For the high school players, they can only have so many practices and the coaches can only do so much, so when they get together it is a lot of team practices because the coaches have to get their team ready,” Flanagan said. “It’s up to the individual player to make themselves better. They have to be willing to put in extra work and go through one-on-one training.”

The camp will provide some of the one-on-one training that the players don’t always have time for during team practices. But Flanagan and the camp’s coaches won’t teach coaching philosophy or anything that conflicts with participants’ coaches.

The camp will be hosted at the OCYFL fields from June 18 through 23 from 9 a.m. to noon with 300 available spots for football players ages eight to 18. The camp can be registered for on the Facebook page Elite Performance Training Camp or by calling (832) 935-5351.