Ambridge senior-to-be Craig Bunney, an accomplished place-kicker attempting to hone his skills to also be a wide receiver this fall, and powerful lineman Dustin Laudermilch from Morgantown, W.Va. are two such athletes.
Bunney is a star soccer player for the Bridgers as well, so veteran football coach Don Yannessa wants to utilize his athletic skills by making him a wideout for his senior season. The 5-foot-11, 170-pound Bunney believed that would only enhance his chances to play college football.
"I've been learning a lot about being a wide receiver, and camps like this one really help me,'' Bunney said. "I played wideout a little bit last year, but we lost a guy to graduation. So, Coach wants me to step in there.''
Bunney has received letters from Georgia Tech, Penn State and Toledo, so far, but he expects to get more as he improves his skills as a wideout. At 6-4 and 290 pounds, Laudermilch has the size to play at the next level, but he hasn't even gotten a whiff from his hometown Mountaineers or any other big-time Division I-A program for that matter.
Laudermilch, and offensive and defensive lineman, has excellent grades as well, and they have led to interest from prestigious Ivy League schools along with the mid-major Mid-American Conference.
"I went to Harvard for an unofficial visit, and I really liked it,'' Laudermilch said. "Boston's a great city, but that's the only place I visited.''
Actually, Laudermilch has been to camps at Pitt's practice facility before and has followed West Virginia in the past as well, so a scholarship offer could be in his future if he continues to show improvement.
"These camps and combines can help you work on your skills and also get your name out there,'' Laudermilch said. "They made a profile on me at the last camp, and the (college) coaches can look at that.
"I got a lot of letters, and my coaches sent out some tapes for me. I also looked on-line for camps and combines to get my name out there, so that's worked out pretty well for me. And it's been a lot of fun.''
Bunney's attempt to take his game to another level has been an eye-opening experience, if not a little rough. "You don't get hit much as a kicker, but you can get knocked around pretty good when you go out to catch a pass,'' Bunney said. "So, I spent some time returning kickoffs and punts, too, so I could ease into it. But I think I'm athletic enough to handle it. And camps like this will help me out.''
Especially when you need to make a name for yourself.