Youth All-Stars Show How It’s Done

Youth All-Stars Show How It’s Done

words by_Cheryl Mathis

We saw the future of football, and it’s definitely on the right track. Not only did the athlete all-stars who played in the Eastbay Youth All-American Bowl Games prove why they earned a spot on the roster, they also showed us all what happens when hard work pays off.

Eastbay Youth All-American BowlA brief recap:

7th Grade
WEST > 10
EAST > 7

8th Grade Unl
EAST > 32
WEST > 28

8th Grade Ltd
WEST > 35
EAST > 20

USA/Canada
CANADA > 42
USA > 37

All of the games had on-the-edge-of-the-bleacher action, amplified by the sheer joy and exhilaration of the national stage and the phenomenal opportunity these kids have to shine like the all-stars they are.

Nobody could walk away from the Alamodome without a story to tell about the USA/Canada. The last few minutes of that game lit up the internet with the heart-stopping, hyperventilating “how is this happening?” responses from both sides. In the end, no one could argue that Canada outplayed the U.S.

Though there’s a strict rule that the crowd is not allowed to rush the field after a game, nobody could hold Canada in the stands as the score was finalized. The noise of the screaming families and friends of the Canadian players filled the ‘Dome with the deafening thunder that only victory can inspire.

7th Grade - East and West

2011 EBYAAB, 7th Grade - East and West

8th Grade Limited

2011 EBYAAB, 8th Grade Limited

8th Grade Limited

2011 EBYAAB, 8th Grade Limited

8th Grade Unlimited

2011 EBYAAB, 8th Grade Unlimited

2011 EBYAAB, USA vs Canada

2011 EBYAAB, USA vs Canada

Canada fans

2011 EBYAAB, Canada fans

Did you miss the live stream of the games? Have no fear. You’ll soon be able to watch the games after they’re archived at Eastbay.com.

Want to know how to be an all-star? Log your stats into Eastbay’s Close the Gap tool to see where you match up against the nation’s best, and then get solid advice on how to close the performance gap.

Youth All-Stars Show How It’s Done

What Makes an All-American?

words_Cheryl Mathis

Eastbay Youth All-American BowlReading through our Youth All-American Bowl roster bios feels like sitting on a big coach bus with a cacophony of pump-up music and “my 40’s better than yours” taunts. These elite seventh and eighth grade football players might have a lot of frenetic youthful energy, but they are doing something right. Each was carefully chosen for the honor of a spot on the roster.

Developing star football players is a big business, and many kids aren’t waiting until high school to start training. Even before puberty kicks in, they’re starting to learn the ins and outs of nutrition and cardio, and they’re learning about teamwork, effort and attitude.

NUTRITION

While pizza and chicken nuggets were a popular choice as a pre-game meal, over 45 kids load up on carbs with plates piled high with pasta. Among the smaller players who are either short and thin or tall and thin, a pre-game meal might be a steak and a whey protein shake like Hunter Holland, a guard from Buford, Georgia. Jacob Harrison, a quarterback from Centerfield, Ohio, has the same idea: he downs a peanut butter protein shake before a game. The other extreme might be 320-pound Demetrius Morgan, a tackle from Chattanooga, Tennessee. He preps with two bananas and a lot of water.

WEIGHT

The range of heights and weights among seventh and eighth graders might seem like an inconsequential matter, but when you’re putting together a squad of elite players, you have to find a place for players at all stages of development. Demetrius from Tennessee probably hasn’t been able to play much football before this Bowl game due to his size, but his shear bulk is a force on the field. You won’t find a 150-pounder like Jalen Washington from Frankfort, Kentucky, pulling down a linebacker, but his skills as a runningback are coveted, and he’ll be lining up with Demetrius on Sunday in Game 2.

MOTIVATION

All good athletes know that the right soundtrack can make or break your attitude when the storm is coming. The majority of the Youth roster gets psyched for the game by jamming to the same tunes. Eminem’s Lose Yourself and Til I Collapse ranked as a player favorite, with Fort Minor’s Remember the Name showing strong as well. Listening to Kanye’s Stronger and Roy Jones, Jr.’s Can’t Be Touched gives them a buzz of invincibility that’ll carry them through to game time.

FAVORITE PLAYERS

When asked who their favorite athletes were, some big names were mentioned most. Superstars like Adrian Peterson, Percy Harvin and Chris Johnson prove that quarterbacks aren’t the only players who get the fame. College standout Cam Newton was also mentioned; his recent Heisman trophy honor put him in the “idol” category for many youth players. Current NFL standouts like Michael Vick and Charles Woodson have been all over the news for good reason, and that attention extends to this crop of athletes who look to them for inspiration.

Read more about the students chosen to play in the Eastbay Youth All-American Bowl, and don’t forget to come back on Sunday to watch the games live at Eastbay.

Wondering where you stack up against these elite Bowl players? Enter your stats in our Close the Gap calculator and get back advice on training, drills and equipment that can help you close the gap between you and the Bowlers.

Youth All-Stars Show How It’s Done

Tune in to see the Eastbay Youth All-American Bowl

words_Cheryl Mathis

Eastbay Youth All-American BowlAll Eastbay eyes are on the group of superstar athletes who are working out in San Antonio, Texas, in preparation for the big game this weekend. While the majority of attention is given to the US Army All-American Bowl that will be broadcasted live on Saturday, Jan. 8, 2011, we’re looking forward to what happens the day after: the Eastbay Youth All-American Bowl.

Together with Football University, we searched across the country for standout seventh and eighth graders who deserved a spot on an all-star Bowl Game roster. Many of these athletes will be the obvious choice a few years down the road for the US Army Bowl game, but we’re lucky enough to get to know them now.

Though the dozens of names on the roster for the three separate games might seem like a crowd, each name shines. For most, this opportunity to play on the national stage was the stuff of daydreams, a dream that finally culminated with a school pep rally where he was presented with his own Bowl jersey. Eastbay knows all of the names, and we’re proud of each of these top athletes.

Today’s student athletes are tomorrow’s superstars, and though not every athlete will go on to a professional career, athletic achievement still plays a large role in self-esteem, academic performance and physical development. The players who will take to the field on Sunday have spent countless hours training for this opportunity in their hometowns and just a few short days training with their Bowl squad.

Don’t miss the Eastbay Youth All-American Bowl on Sunday! You can stream the games live at Eastbay. The seventh graders will be up first in Game 1, followed by eighth graders (unlimited) in Game 2 and eighth graders (limited) in Game 3. Stick around to watch US take on Canada in Game 4.

Don’t want to wait until Sunday to see the action? Check out the top 10 highlights from last year’s Youth All-American Bowl games.

Want to be the next athlete superstar? Check out Eastbay’s Close the Gap football program to see where you match up against last year’s All-American Bowl athletes.

Youth All-Stars Show How It’s Done

Eastbay Presents Close the Gap Football Program

words_Jordan Hagedorn

Eastbay has partnered up with our friends at STACK Magazine and Football University to launch a program called Close the Gap to help high school kids get the most out of their athletic talent.

STACK is providing the training videos to help the athletes improve.

Football University (FBU) provides the test results that come from some of the best football players in the nation. They also have football drills on video to help you improve at your respective position.

Close the Gap has information for Quarterbacks, Running Backs, Defensive Backs, Wide Receivers ,Offensive Linemen, Defensive Linemen and Linebackers. It is a great way to find out where you rank compared to some of the top football athletes in the country.

Click here to check out Close the Gap.

Be sure to scroll to the bottom of the page to check out the Close the Gap widget.