After 52 years of training aspiring high school and youth quarterbacks and receivers, Quarterback and Receiver Camp has decided to call it a day.
My Dad, Dr. Will Hayes, started “Quarterback Camp” in 1965 when I was a high school sophomore at San Marcos High School in Santa Barbara, CA. Long before the Internet, Dad spent countless hours at the Santa Barbara Public Library looking for a camp where I, his then 15 year-old son, could learn more about the position of quarterback. Finding only one QB camp located as far away from California as one could get in Maine, Dad decided to start his own camp in California.
Dad sent hundreds of flyers to every high school football coach in southern California. From that mailing, 10 QB’s attended the first camp at Villanova School in Ojai. It quickly became obvious that a key ingredient missing to this QB Camp concept was receivers! Someone needed to catch the passes that the QB’s were throwing. And Dad didn’t want to see athletes getting injured during the summer so he made QBR Camp a non-contact camp. So in 1966 Quarterback and Receiver Camp as we know it today was born!
Dad hired great head coaches including Bob Casciola and Gary Fallon whose job was to get the best high school and youth coaches to teach the campers the fundamentals of passing and catching a football. Over the course of camp every player had over 500 repetitions while the coaches coached each camper on every rep. But QBR Camp was much more than football. It was also about emphasizing what it meant to be a solid citizen, sportsman, student and leader.
Tens of thousands of high school and youth players from all 50 states and over a dozen foreign countries are QBR alums. We’ve had four generations of family attend QBR – grandfather, son, grandson and great grandson! At its height QBR had six-nationwide camps held in the West, Midwest, Southwest, Southeast and East. One summer in the 70’s over 1,500 campers attended QBR. States where QBR camp was held included California, New Jersey, Arkansas, Texas, Florida, Georgia, Michigan and Ohio…and an international camp held in Germany!
In 2001 at age 87, Dr. Will Hayes, widely known as the founder of the football specialty camp, headed off to the great gridiron in the sky. My two brothers, Doug and Rand, and I continued the QBR tradition until this past summer. The past 15 years have seen a lot of changes in camps, clinics, parental expectations and recruiting that have had an impact on the training of young athletes. I am proud of what QBR has accomplished over the years in basing our teaching on fundamentals. From NFL Hall of Famers, to Heisman Trophy winners, All Pros, College All-Americans, Parade All Americans, All State, All Conference and to the players who never thought they would make the junior varsity team, our goal was to make every youngster a better player and a better person after having attended QBR.
I want to thank all of the QBR coaches, athletic trainers, the athletes and their parents, relatives, coaches, mentors and friends, Gatorade, Andy Bark and Student Sports Magazine, the college summer conference coordinators and everyone else who made Quarterback and Receiver Camp gained recognition as the #1 Football Specialty Camp in the U.S.