Colonial Heights – On his way to the NFL, C.J. Prosise had coaches, trainers and family support him from Petersburg, to Woodberry Forest and Notre Dame and finally the Seattle Seahawks.
Ironically, one aide he didn’t have was a football camp like the one he held on Saturday. The “Be Prosise Football Skills Academy” is his way of giving something to a community he found lacking.
“I didn’t do many of these camps growing up” Prosise said in between drills with campers. “This area doesn’t have a lot of guys that have made it as far as I have. That’s the main reason I wanted to do this. I want to give back as much as possible to be a role model for these [kids]”.
"I had brothers that showed me the way. I had a mom that supported me through everything. And my dad showed me how to take care of my family. I want to make them proud."
Just over 100 of these kids turned out for Prosise's inagural camp, a good number for a first year event. Instructors from area high school and college programs, even Prosise's cousin Ray who played at Virginia State, put the campers through their paces.
Prosise took part in some drills himself, fully recovered from a shoulder injury that cut his rookie NFL season short. "That was the first [injury] that really sidelined me" Prosise said. "It was an up and down year. When I was out there, I did really well. I want to get my body right to be ready for this year."
Despite the injury, Prosise figures prominently into the Seahawks future plans given his skill at catching passes out of the backfield. It's a comfort and security not lost on a player with only 11 NFL games under his belt.
"I'm excited for the year to come" Prosise said. "Everything they see in me, I want to be able to prove them right. They're giving me an opportunity so I want to make the most of it."
A lesson well worth sharing with the next generation.