Copper pumped for banquet

Published 4:21 am Friday, June 13, 2008

By By KEVIN TRAVIS, Sports Editor
Now that the New Orleans Saints have wrapped up their organized team activities, Terrance Copper can focus on his first banquet and football camp.
Copper, who returned home Thursday, is expecting some 200 guests at tonight’s banquet, which will be held from 6 to 9 p.m. at the Washington Civic Center.
He’ll be joined by New Orleans teammates Devery Henderson, Robert Meacham, Lance Moore and David Patten, along with assistant coaches Curtis Johnson — the guest speaker, and Carter Sheridan. Also attending the banquet will be Houston Texans fullback Vonta Leach, along with former East Carolina teammates Donald Whitehead, Marvin Townes and Grover Benton.
Each of the players and coaches, along with Philadelphia Eagles wide receiver Jamal Jones and ECU linebacker Gerald Lawrence, will be at Saturday’s Terrance Copper First Annual Football Camp.
Saints’ running backs Reggie Bush and Deuce McAllister are flying to London on Saturday to promote the team’s Oct. 26 game at Wembley Stadium against the San Diego Chargers and won’t be able to make the camp. Both are hoping to get to the banquet, but time constraints may not allow that to happen.
While dinner is served, a pianist will perform at the banquet. Following dinner, Copper’s former football coach at Washington High School, Brian Paschal (the current Roanoke High School football coach and athletics director) will introduce Copper.
Copper, a recent WHS Walk of Fame inductee, will talk about the players and coaches who will be helping out at his camp.
He’ll then turn things over to Johnson, the guest speaker. Johnson has been the Saints’ receivers coach since 2006. Prior to his start with the Saints, Johnson was the receivers coach at the University of Miami for 10 seasons where he helped Andre Johnson, Santana Moss and Reggie Wayne, among others, earn first-round selections in the NFL Draft.
After Johnson concludes his speech, a silent auction will be held. Up for grabs will be two Saints’ jerseys, one black and one white, signed by Copper. Those attending the banquet will also be able to bid on two Saints’ helmets, one signed by Copper and the other signed by the team.
Once the auction is over, players will be available for autographs.
Football camp
The camp, which is for kids ages 7-18, will be held Saturday from 9 a.m. to noon at Washington High School.
Pre-registration will be held from 7:30 to 9 a.m. on the morning of the camp. The cost, which includes a T-shirt, is $30.
There will be three entrances into the Pam Pack football stadium.
Non-camp participants and spectators, who will pay a $5 admittance fee, will go through the first gate.
Those campers who are already preregistered will go through the gate by the concession stand.
Those who are registering on the morning of the camp will go through the gate located near the baseball field.
Copper will address the campers from 9 to 9:10 a.m. A group dynamic stretch will be held from 9:10 to 9:20 a.m.
The campers will then be broken down into three age groups: Group 1, 7-10 years-old; Group 2, 11-14 years-old and Group 3, 15-18 years-old.
The groups will go through three sessions, including offense, defense and agility.
In session one, which goes from 9:20 to 10:05 a.m., Group 1 will do offense, Group 2 will do defense and Group 3 will do agility.
Following a 10-minute break, the second session will last from 10:15 to 11 a.m. Group 1 will do defense, Group 2 will do agility and Group 3 will do offense.
After another 10-minute break, the third session will go from 11:10 to 11:55 a.m. Group 1 will do agility, Group 2 will do offense and Group 3 will do defense.
Campers, and those who pay a $5 entrance fee to get inside the gates, will be able to get autographs from the football players from noon until 1 p.m.