"The days are very disciplined. We emphasize teamwork and hard work. We want kids to leave with improved skills, but also just a better understanding of the game. Most importantly, we want it to be a good experience for them. It should be fun and they should take away some enthusiasm," said camp director Michael Born.
"Danny is not just a name behind the camp. He is very involved, which can be unusual for a camp put on by an NBA player," added Michael Born.
In the past eight years, Manning has been present at every single day of camp.
"If the camp day starts at 9, Danny is there at 8:15 starting to set things up. He is there all day, every day. He does the drill work, the stations, and so on. He is a guy that just loves being there," said Born.
"I can think of one hour Danny missed of camp. That particular time he had a previous autograph session scheduled for the Phoenix Suns. It is a little unique to have a player so dedicated to the camp."
But Manning always has been unique. Not many #1 NBA Draft picks return home and accept a position as Director of Student Athlete Development at their alma mater. Why the dedication to the camp? Silly question.
"It is my camp," Manning said simply. "I am the one doing it. Of course I am involved. I want to be sure things are done the right way, the way I feel it should be done."
The way Manning feels things should be done is with an emphasis on fundamentals and sportsmanship. Manning and his staff hope the lessons taught extend beyond the court.
"We want kids to understand becoming good at something is hard work. That is true as a person and a player," explained Manning.
Still, this week is not all work and no play. "We want it to be as fun as possible" emphasized Manning.
Manning's friendships and connections with NBA and KU players – past and present – ensure that campers have contact with an array of players and a variety of experiences.
"On the first day, Danny tells the kids they may see some faces they recognize throughout the week," said Born. "They can talk to them, hang out with them, work with them on the court. But the kids are discouraged from asking for autographs or pictures. Danny is just as concerned the players that help him out also have a good experience at the camp."
Danny Manning Basketball Camp
Date: July 26 - 30
Boys and Girls, 2nd – 8th Grade
$135 – half day sessions
Bill Self Basketball Camp
June 13-17 or June 20-24
Boys, 8-19 Years
$395 Boarding Camper
$300 Day Camper
Bonnie Henrickson Basketball Camps
Ladies, 8th Grade and Up
Junior Jayhawk Camp
Girls, 7th Grade and Under