The Youth Shrine Bowl of the Carolinas is a multi-state football game for 6th through 8th grade players. Ja’Khaydin Kinard,an eighth grade player at Pine Ridge Middle, was selected to participate.
Ja’Khaydin was selected after participating in a combine at Ridgeview high school. A combine is a series of events designed to measure your skills and abilities. “I think I did well with the receiving drills and the 40-yard dash,” Ja’Khaydin said.
The team played at Bank of America in Charlotte and met Julius Peppers, a former All American college football player and 6 time NFL All-Pro player. Ja’Khaydin said that “it was one of the best and most interesting experience I’ve ever had.”
There were 6 teams that participated, separated by state and grade. Ja’Khaydin’s team was one of the winning teams! When talking to Ja’Khaydin he said his favorite part was going to Dave and Busters and Golden Corral with his teammates.
On the third day Ja’khaydin was in Charlotte, he woke up, took a shower, and then went downstairs to eat breakfast. After eating breakfast he went to football practice and then went to The Shriners Hospitals for Children in Greenville, South Carolina. At the hospital the team got a tour and ate lunch there. Then they went back to football practice. They were going to have a scrimmage against North Carolina but bad weather canceled it. After their practice they went back the hotel for their sports banquet, then returned to the room to sleep.
Ja’Khaydin thinks it will help him in the future by the recruitment opportunities given by the competition. He also said that the competition at the Youth Shrine Bowl has built his skills and improved his technique, saying “I received skills in the wide receiver position, like different ways to catch the ball.”