WGH to host Michigan football camp in June

WARREN – Jim Harbaugh has been the lightning rod for NCAA satellite football camps. Satellite camps allow college coaches to work as guests at football camps held at other institutions.

The Michigan coach conducted camps earlier this year in the heart of Southeastern Conference country and drew the ire of the NCAA, even to the extent where these events were banned by the Division I Board of Directors a month ago.

Recently, that ruling was rescinded, which means Harbaugh and his staff are coming to the Warren G. Harding Elite National Football Camp on June 9. The one-day camp will be from 9 a.m. to noon at Mollenkopf Stadium.

Harbaugh and his Wolvernine staff are also heading to camps in Connecticut, southern California, Kansas and Missouri, according to the Detroit Free Press.

WGH football coach Steve Arnold said the Warren camp can be very beneficial to the athletes who attend. It is limited to players who will be in grades 10 through 12 next school year.

The camp will be run by the WGH football staff, with the Michigan staff assisting. The Raiders current players will attend for free. For more information on the camp, call Arnold at 330-841-2235 or log on to warrenschools.k12.oh.us/football-camp.

“I think that’s vital for our program, for our school in general,” said Arnold, whose team made it to the second round of the state playoffs last season in Division II.

He said Warren-area campers, along with his current players, can greatly benefit from the instruction of Big Ten coaches.

“That’s going to make you go a little bit harder, pay a little bit more attention,” Arnold said. “It enhances us as a program to have this occur.”

That said, the NCAA states the college coaches are not permitted to actively recruit campers while instructing them. How does this affect current WGH players like Lynn Bowden, who is still looking for a college after verbally decommiting from Indiana?

“It’s the Warren G. Harding Elite Football Camp with Michigan coaches here,” Arnold said. “We’re going to conduct our camp, just like we would anybody. They’re going to be here assisting us.”

Arnold said the Michigan coaches coming to the camp was not predicated on the fact his brother, Dave Arnold, played football at Michigan under Bo Schembechler.

“If Ohio State were to call and say they want to work our camp, I would’ve said yeah, or any other university,” Arnold said. “That’s positive exposure for our kids and for our school.”

It does help that the Michigan staff is coming to assist at this WGH event.

“We’re very fortunate they’re going to be in attendance,” Arnold said. “We’re fortunate they’re going to be here and part of our camp. Obviously he (Harbaugh) initiated this satellite camp stuff. A few weeks ago the NCAA ruled it down. Now, it was reinstated. It’s a good thing for kids in general.”

Ohio Dominican, an NCAA Division II program, will be in Warren for a camp on June 29.

Arnold said satellite camps, like the one being assisted by Michigan on June 9, don’t help out just the elite athletes like Bowden, but help other prospective athletes who won’t play at that level, but still want to play collegiately.

“Me personally, the satellite camps help kids in general because everybody can’t go to a power conference school,” Arnold said. “Now you may have a kid who may fall through the cracks, but is seen by a (Mid-American Conference) school. The MAC plays great football, but they’re not the Big Ten, SEC or the ACC.

“It’s very beneficial for young people, and we try to promote them and give them the opportunity to further their education through athletics. That’s where you benefit where the satellite camps come in.”