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Caveat Emptor: Celebrity Football Camps

After what has easily been the most hectic 24 hours in my four years of blogging, I'm at the point I've known from the beginning would be the hardest: figuring out what I need to write. Burnt Orange Nation is not a news organization, and I am not a reporter.

However, we are a vibrant community of Texas fans, which means that on occasion outside groups come to us, as the Texas Premier Football Camp did when it asked us to promote its upcoming football camp. After being assured the event was for charity (a site policy), I agreed to promote the event, and did so enthusiastically here.

Because of that and that alone, I'm reporting on details pertaining to that camp that have subsequently surfaced. After careful consideration of what should and shouldn't be reported on the blog, I've decided that camp participants and potential registrars are entitled to the following information, broken down by subject:


Two attorneys for Creative Artists Agency, Tracy Lartigue and Mark Heligman insist that Roy Williams will not be attending the camp on July 10th and 11th. Mr. Heligman issued the following statement to me at 11:30 a.m. Wednesday: "Though Roy wishes his good friends B.J. and Sloan all the best in their endeavors, he will not be attending their camp."

At 5:30 p.m., I heard a radio interview with Roy Williams from last week in which he very much sounded like he was attending the camp. After I posted this update to BON, Tracy Lartigue phoned me to say that the commitment heard on the radio was a soft one and that Roy was not in fact attending.

At 7:00 p.m., B.J. Johnson told me that he had just spoken to Roy Williams personally. Johnson said Williams was "trying to make his schedule work so that he could attend." Camp participants who are counting on seeing Roy Williams should follow up with the camp office if they have any questions; as far as I'm concerned, I've hit an impasse. BJ says he believes Roy's going to make it. Mr. Lartigue insists he is not. I have no idea.


I spoke with Michael Griffin today at 1:15 p.m.; he informed me that he had never agreed to do the camp and in fact is hosting his own camp a week after the TPFC.

B.J. Johnson told me at 7:00 p.m. that Michael Griffin's name will be removed from the camp website.


At 6:45 p.m., Mark Kiester, CEO of the Boys and Girls Club of the Capital Area, told me that my phone call marked the first time he was hearing about the football camp and that B&GC had not authorized the charity's name to be used with the event. He noted that Michael Huff and Derrick Johnson had previously done a terriffic basketball event for his organization, but that he had not been informed of any upcoming football camp run by BJ Johnson, Sloan Thomas, or Roy Williams.

When I told BJ Johnson this at 7:00 p.m., he said that the charity was being coordinated through Roy Williams' aunt, who has been involved with the TPFC from the beginning. Johnson also mentioned Michael Huff's previous basketball event as a connection to the Boys and Girls Club.

I phoned back Mark Kiester, who said, "I could not have nicer things to say about Michael Huff and Derrick Johnson and the work they've done for this organization. They are two of the best success stories of the Boys and Girls Club I can think of. However, it is absolutely necessary that if BJ Johnson and the Texas Premier Football Camp would like to continue to list the Boys and Girls Club of the Capital Area as its partner, they need to immediately phone our office to go through the partnership procedures, as we do with every event."


Among the many things that became clear to me today was that "no-shows" among confirmed guests are common at these types of camps. Given that and the careless manner in which this particular camp has been organized (a charitable characterization, given the Griffin and B&GC situations), Burnt Orange Nation will no longer promote any camps of this kind in the future.

I will not be reporting on the record anything else from today. If camp participants have any further questions that they think I can help them with, they may phone me at 949-910-9238 or send me an email. I will help best I can.