Walker Valley quarterback Kolten Gibson and wide receiver Bryce Nunnelly recently traveled to Charlotte, N.C., to participate in an invite-only Nike+Football The Opening Camp. (Banner Photos - Saralyn Norkus)
Walker Valley quarterback Kolten Gibson and wide receiver Bryce Nunnelly recently made a special trip to Charlotte, N.C., to participate in an invite only camp, Nike+ Football “The Opening.”
This camp, which is presented by Student Sports, is pegged as a “dynamic competition for the nation’s most elite high school football prospects.”
After submitting film, stats and grades, Gibson, Nunnelly and wide receiver Cooper Melton were all invited to the Charlotte event, which Melton was unable to attend due to a football camp at Austin Peay.
Nunnelly, a rising senior and Gibson, a rising junior were among 75 quarterbacks and 115 wide receivers that were selected to participate in one of the 14 camps held throughout the nation.
“Everybody I was going against had five or more offers from big schools. Knowing that you were invited there and got to compete with them gives you a lot of confidence,” Nunnelly stated.
The participants were measured in five different categories, the 40-yard dash, vertical, peak power, agility and power ball.
Nunnelly received a rating of 91.41, which put him in the 97th percentile of all rising seniors across the county. The wide receiver’s stats included running the 40 in 4.73 seconds, the agility shuttle run in 4.35 seconds and a high jump of 36.5 inches.
Gibson finished with a ranking of 75.03 to be in the 88th percentile of all rising juniors. His stats included a 37.5 inch vertical jump, which is in the top one-percent, running a 4.50 in the agility test and the 40 in 4.98 seconds.
“I don’t know how that happened to be honest,” Gibson said on beating Nunnelly’s vertical. “My first jump was 33 inches and then the second was 37.5 inches.”
Neither Mustang was particularly pleased with their 40 times, which were clocked via laser time.
“The 40 was definitely slower than I thought, because it was laser timed and not hand timed,” Gibson commented.
“It’s probably two or three tenths more accurate than hand time,” Nunnelly added.
One of the highlights for the two players was when they found themselves matched up in a drill.
“In the 7-on-7 I actually got to throw to him,” Gibson said.
For both Mustangs, “The Opening” was a great learning experience.
“My footwork I think keeps getting better from going to these camps. Also, it (helps build) confidence, knowing that you can compete with those type of guys,” Gibson explained.
For Nunnelly, the competition and the coaching proved beneficial.
“It was a lot of fun and some good competition. We did a lot of agility drills and we ran a lot of routes. The coaching there was very good and I definitely learned some tips on running certain routes and what to do to make the DB turn too quick,” he began. “I learned about being more aggressive as a wide receiver. You think that as a wide receiver you just catch the ball and really not do anything, but the emphasized that when you’re not getting the ball to block and also make it look like you’re running a route every single play.”