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C.H.A.M.P. Camp Coach Spotlight: Denver Broncos Safety David Bruton

David Bruton, AFC Champion Denver Broncos safety and special-teams captain, is one of numerous NFL players who have dedicated a portion of their offseason in the past to working with Heart Power, Inc. and various C.H.A.M.P. Camps. “[Heart Power, Inc. CEO] Champ [Kelly] knew that I had some connections with Kentucky, since I was born there. It was just a great way to link up, see my family, and see the other kids in Kentucky that grew up with a similar lifestyle as I did,” said Bruton. While the C.H.A.M.P. Camps aren’t quite as competitive as an NFL practice, Bruton says the professional athlete in him is hard to suppress, especially when he is coaching against teammates such as Pro-Bowl tight end Julius Thomas and fellow Broncos defender Chris Harris Jr. “As an NFL guy you love competition no matter what form it’s in—if it’s jumping jacks or what not. It’s just great to be at the camp and be competitive. The player-coaches get to be competitive along with the kids and it was an exciting experience and a lot of fun being in that atmosphere with the kids,” said Bruton. The 2013 special-teams captain is widely regarded as a leader in the Denver Broncos community, and is also recognized for his passion for being active in the communities that supported him throughout his youth and subsequent football career. During the 2011 NFL lockout, Bruton, who graduated from Notre Dame with degrees in political science, sociology, and a minor in Africano studies, returned to his former high school as substitute teacher. “We’re blessed to have the opportunity to be in the NFL,” Bruton said. “So to bless these kids in some way, shape, or fashion—whether [...]

By | April 28th, 2014|News|Comments Off on C.H.A.M.P. Camp Coach Spotlight: Denver Broncos Safety David Bruton

UK football notebook: Ex-Cat Kelly has Heart Power in right place with free camp

By Jennifer Smith — Herald-Leader Staff Writer Football camp was not an option for Champ Kelly. He grew up poor in the Florida panhandle, raised mostly by his grandparents as his young mother battled drug addiction and his father struggled to stay around. There were no football camps in Campbellton, Fla., population 200, give or take a dozen. "In order to even go to a camp, you had to travel 50 miles or so and then I couldn't afford to go to any of those," said Kelly, who eventually made his way to Lexington where he played football for the University of Kentucky. Kelly could never go to a youth football camp, so he's created a few of his own. Through his non-profit foundation, Heart Power, the UK graduate and his wife, Stephanie, are taking football camps to places that are close to their hearts, including the one they are putting on in Lexington at Henry Clay High School from June 21-22. It's one of three non-contact camps Heart Power is making available to children ages 10-17 in Denver (where Kelly now works in the front office of the Broncos), Lexington and Panama City, Fla. Special-needs children are welcome to attend the camp, Kelly said. "I always wanted to be able to host a camp that would bring quality coaches and teach football, but also stress life skills and make it affordable," Kelly said in a recent phone interview. "This is the first year we've been able to offer it completely free. It's a total blessing and a total testament to the sponsors we have and the staff." When Kelly started the camp a couple of years ago near his hometown in Florida, he worried [...]

By | June 8th, 2013|News|Comments Off on UK football notebook: Ex-Cat Kelly has Heart Power in right place with free camp

Denver Area Kids Learn Football, Life Skills at C.H.A.M.P Camp

Jun 7th, 2013 at 2:22 pm by Kim Constantinesco On Friday, Denver Broncos assistant director of pro personnel Anthony “Champ” Kelly put on his second annual C.H.A.M.P Camp at All City Stadium in Denver. The two-day camp, which emphasizes Character, Heart, Attitude, Motivation, and Pride, was free for kids 10-17 years-old. “When I was growing up, there weren’t camps like this in the city that I was born, and the camps that were a little further away, I couldn’t afford,” Kelly said. “I grew up wanting to learn how to be better and I didn’t have the opportunity, so I always told myself and told my wife that if we’re ever in the position where we can give back to the people who grew up like us, we would try to do it.” Now in charge of evaluating free agents, coordinating player workouts and visits, and scouting and compiling research for the Broncos, Kelly grew up in Campbellton, Florida, a small town just south of the Alabama border. He was raised by his grandparents and taught to always give his all. While the kids at C.H.A.M.P Camp went through non-contact position drills, Kelly made sure to highlight the real reason why they were there. “Winning is listening to your parents and doing what they tell you to do,” Kelly told his campers. “Winning is showing up at places on time. Winning is doing what’s right. Doing those things help you win at life and make you a better person.” C.H.A.M.P Camp is just one function of Kelly’s non-profit, Heart Power, Inc. The organization’s goal is to support youth and families, who are in search of positive, encouraging influences in their lives. “We stress football fundamentals [...]

By | June 7th, 2013|News|Comments Off on Denver Area Kids Learn Football, Life Skills at C.H.A.M.P Camp

Kelly bringing “C.H.A.M.P. Camp” back to Panhandle

Posted: Saturday, May 4, 2013 3:33 pm by Dustin Kent Former Graceville Tigers football star Anthony “Champ” Kelly is bringing his “C.H.A.M.P. Camp” back to the Panhandle for a fourth consecutive year June 28-29 at Deane Bozeman High School in Panama City. The two-day instructional camp is being moved to Panama City after previously being held at Graceville High School in order to expand the camp’s appeal by centralizing its location, Kelly said Friday. “We wanted to stretch it to some other places in North Florida, and we thought (Panama City) would be a good area to reach out to,” he said. “We can still get the same kids we’ve attracted in the past from Graceville, but we can pick up some more Panama City kids and get some more Jackson County folks involved. It’s more convenient for us and it’s also allowing us to reach another demographic of kids. “We were contacted by some of those coaches (in the Panama City area) and they were excited about it. I think change is good and the vision for this camp was to move it around across North Florida and the Wiregrass and be as impactful as we could be.” It won’t be the last move for the event, Kelly said, mentioning Marianna and Dothan as possible future locations. “We’re not going to be static and just stay in one place,” he said. “We’re going to keep our options open.” Another big change in the camp this year is the cost – as in, there isn’t one – with it now completely free for the first time thanks to sponsorship funding. It’s a goal that Kelly, now Assistant Director of Pro Personnel with the NFL’s Denver [...]

By | May 4th, 2013|News|Comments Off on Kelly bringing “C.H.A.M.P. Camp” back to Panhandle

C.H.A.M.P. Camp bringing fun, mentors to local kids

By: Lauren Delgado | Jackson County Floridan Published: May 31, 2012 Updated: May 31, 2012 - 5:00 AM »  Comments | Post a Comment Anthony “Champ” Kelly, a Graceville High School graduate and now the assistant director of pro personnel for the Denver Broncos, knew he wanted to start some sort of camp for kids in his hometown and elsewhere. Growing up, football camps were far away, expensive or both. Nor did local professionals, like doctors or lawyers, speak to the high school students. Having someone to look up to was important then and he said it’s even more important now. “Trust me, kids these days see enough negative day in and day out,” Kelly said. “They see the drug dealers driving around in the best cars etc, so they feel like they can attain riches this way. If they never see or hear from doctors, lawyers, etc., then they will have a hard time feeling those positions are attainable.” Kelly said the community helped raise him and he wanted to give back. This year marks the third annual C.H.A.M.P., or Character, Heart, Attitude, Motivation and Pride, Camp in Graceville. Registration has opened for this June 29 and 30 event at Graceville High School. Campers between the ages of 10 and 17 are invited to register. Anyone who wants to be a coach can register as well. It costs $50 to enroll. Staff will teach campers football basics, going through each position with them. The group will run through drills like one-on-ones and some group work like pass skeleton and offensive/defensive line combination work, Kelly said. Besides football, guest speakers including local business leaders, former collegiate and NFL athletes will give their message about their life journey, [...]

By | May 31st, 2012|News|Comments Off on C.H.A.M.P. Camp bringing fun, mentors to local kids

Campbellton’s Kelly in the middle of Tebowmania

Twitter: @PCNHJasonShoot   DENVER — Anthony “Champ” Kelly finds himself smack dab in the middle of the maelstrom that is Tebowmania. The Campbellton native is the assistant director of pro personnel with the NFL’s Denver Broncos, and he’s had a privileged seat watching Tim Tebow and the Broncos ascend to the top of the AFC West and make a run toward the playoffs. “I’ve never been in a situation — and I’ve played on almost every level, coached and done some stuff in football — I haven’t been around a guy or a situation like this with Tim,” Kelly said late last week. “But he directs the attention to the right place. He doesn’t ask for all of this. He wants to go out, play football and win games. “He knows where his faith comes from, and that’s the main thing.” Tebow will quarterback the Broncos against one of the NFL’s most consistent franchises over the past decade, the New England Patriots (3 p.m. CST, CBS). Denver (8-5) has won six straight games and seven of eight since Tebow earned the starting nod over Kyle Orton following Week 5. Tebow has rallied Denver to a number of come-from-behind victories this season, but he can’t afford to start slowly as he has in most of his games. New England will try to establish an early lead and force the Broncos to rally by throwing the ball, which not only puts added pressure on Tebow, but it also could make Denver more one-dimensional without a running game to balance the play calling. “We’re playing against one of the best teams in the NFL over the last few years,” Kelly said. “They have one of the best QBs [...]

By | December 18th, 2011|News|Comments Off on Campbellton’s Kelly in the middle of Tebowmania

Kelly uses experience to help struggling kids

Whenever the NFL lockout finally ends... and the Broncos can start signing players, Anthony "Champ" Kelly, their assistant director of pro personnel, will start working the phones. Alongside the rest of the Broncos' front-office team, Kelly will recruit free agents — unrestricted, college and the Broncos' own — in the frenzy expected to follow ratification of a new collective bargaining agreement. For many of the players on the other end of those calls, the NFL is a land of dreams. But Kelly, 31, knows a little more about dreams than most. He took a decidedly unorthodox path to the Broncos' front office. The son of a mother addicted to crack cocaine and a mostly absent father, he was raised by his grandparents in Campbellton, Fla., population 220, just south of the Alabama state line. His mother went into labor with him on her 20th birthday. "I was actually 'Champ' before I was Anthony," he said in his Dove Valley office last week. "When I was born, my mother said, 'We made it, didn't we, champ?' So everybody called me Champ from that point on. I was named Anthony three days later." It would be a while before he understood what his mother meant. "Before she passed, on her deathbed, she became my best friend," he said. "She told me about her regrets." His mother's addiction led to heart failure. She spent her final months bedridden, dying a little more than six years ago at age 45. "As a kid growing up, not understanding addiction, you feel like your parents don't love you, or that you're isolated and alone," Kelly said. "But now, in hindsight, I understand that it wasn't that she loved me any less, [...]

By | August 14th, 2011|News|Comments Off on Kelly uses experience to help struggling kids

C.H.A.M.P. Camp Back in Graceville

GRACEVILLE, Fla- It's time for the 2nd annual C.H.A.M.P. Camp at Graceville High School this week. It's a football camp hosted by Anthony "Champ" Kelly, a Graceville alum, who is the assistant director of pro personnel for the Denver Broncos. Kelly wants to continue to give back to the kids in his hometown and beyond. Last summer Champ Kelly started the C.H.A.M.P. camp to show young football players the fundamentals of the game, and to also teach them about more than just football. "Just talk about life skills," Champ Kelly said. "Accountability, just encouragement. About being tough, being reliable." Champ and his coaches are back for year number two, which they hope will doubles the first. "We've gone to Dothan Alabama to encourage some of those kids to come out. We had a chance to go to some schools here in Panama city to encourage those kids to come out. So we're excited about this year, hoping to double the turnout from a year ago in Graceville," added Kelly. Champ is not alone in this venture. He brings in several coaches and former players to give these children a chance to learn from people who have been where they want to go. People like Eric Kelly, a Bay High alum and former Kentucky Wildcat, who played in the NFL. "Just to be able to help the kids out and give them an opportunity to understand what it takes to achieve their goals, whether it's being an athlete or a doctor or lawyer," Eric Kelly said. "Whatever it may be. Just being able to give the kids in my area, that don't get that opportunity on an every day basis, a chance to meet someone who's [...]

By | June 30th, 2011|News|Comments Off on C.H.A.M.P. Camp Back in Graceville

Kelly’s Camp Fosters Success

Assistant Director of Pro Personnel Champ Kelly runs a football camp pointing youths in the right direction.   ENGLEWOOD, Colo. -- Anthony "Champ" Kelly grew up in a broken home.   Living in a small rural town in the Florida panhandle, his parents struggled to provide a stable household and there were constant temptations to get involved with a dangerous crowd. It would have been easy for Kelly to fall prey to his difficult surroundings, but he survived that troubled childhood. "When I was growing up my mother was addicted to drugs and my dad wasn't around all the time. I was raised basically by my grandparents. We didn't have a whole lot," Kelly said. "A lot of the people that I grew up with - a lot of those people are in jail. Some are dead. Some got involved in drugs. I could have made the decision to get on the wrong path. "But having athletics and the strong presence of coaches helped steer me on the right path." Kelly - now the assistant director of pro personnel for the Denver Broncos - found success and proper guidance through the game of football. He played collegiately at the University of Kentucky and later played professionally in the United Indoor Football League. Now, with the help of his wife Stephanie, Kelly is using the sport to help steer youths in the right direction with Heart Power Inc. - a non-profit organization the couple created in 2010. According to Kelly, the most important aspect of his organization is the two-day, non-contact football camps. The 2nd annual C.H.A.M.P. camp recently took place in Kelly's hometown of Graceville, Fla., and also made its way to Lexington, Ky., for [...]

By | June 18th, 2011|News|Comments Off on Kelly’s Camp Fosters Success

Graceville native Kelly gives back with C.H.A.M.P. Camp

    By JASON SHOOT / News Herald Writer    GRACEVILLE — Anthony “Champ” Kelly refused to be an example of someone who moved away from this quiet town and never returned. “I lived in Campbellton all my life and graduated from Graceville,” said Kelly, now the assistant coordinator of pro and college scouting for the NFL’s Denver Broncos. “It’s a very small, rural area. There are not a lot of professionals like pro athletes or pro business people who came back to Graceville and spoke to the kids or students there. So for me, I didn’t know what all was out there. Not knowing what’s out there can limit your vision of where you want to go.” For the second consecutive year, Kelly is giving back to his former home in the form of The C.H.A.M.P. Camp, a two-day non-contact football camp scheduled for June 30 and July 1 at Graceville High School. The camp is for kids ages 10-17 and costs $50 to enter, though exceptions may be made for kids unable to cover the expense. Last year’s camp included 120 athletes, and Kelly hopes the camp grows considerably this year. Kelly added that he expects the number of staffers to increase, too, with a blend of area coaches and former college players. “Last year we had around 30 (coaches) and probably 15 people on the staff,” Kelly said. “This year we hope there’s around 40 coaches from the local area, and the guys I’m bringing with me. … The thing we hope to accomplish with this camp is this: We want those guys to see past the streets of Campbellton, Graceville, Panama City, Dothan (Ala.),” Kelly said. “The sky truly is the [...]

By | May 25th, 2011|News|Comments Off on Graceville native Kelly gives back with C.H.A.M.P. Camp