During the course of three days this week, seven Tribe players met with hundreds of area youth participating in York County and James City County summer recreation programs. As part of the events, W&M players talked about the importance of working hard both in the classroom as well as on the field and what it takes to be successful in both areas. Additionally, Tribe players demonstrated position drills with volunteers and concluded with question-and-answer sessions. A few lucky participants were also given souvenir mini Tribe footballs.
Nearly 200 kids grades K-7 from the York County Parks and Recreation Summer Fun Program participated in Tuesday's event at Queens Lake Middle School. Approximately 80 more youths from the James City County Parks and Recreation Summer programs participated in similar events at Rawls Byrd and Toano later in the week.
"It sparks curiosity and community involvement," said Reggie Jones, camp counselor and Bruton High School assistant head football coach. "You get young kids idolizing men with a positive outlook. It gives them hope. It makes them feel good, and it shows responsibility."
Tribe players who took part in the community outreach programs included Wes Steinman, Evan Francks, Dante Cook, Mike Salazar, Garreth Hissong, Meltoya Jones, Chris Johnson and Ryan Smith.
Ranked as high as No. 1 nationally in the preseason polls, the Tribe will open the 2010 season when it plays at Massachusetts on Sept. 4.