While many football camps stress Xs and Os, the Jay Richardson Camp at Dublin Scioto High School focused on life skills.

While many football camps stress Xs and Os, the Jay Richardson Camp at Dublin Scioto High School focused on life skills.

The second annual camp, which was held June 24-25, was open to boys ages 11-18.

Richardson, a defensive end for the Seattle Seahawks who played at Ohio State and graduated from Scioto in 2002, said he was thrilled that he could hold the camp at his alma mater.

The theme of the camp was "There is more to sports than the game," and Richardson said he was eager to share that message.

"This means a lot," Richardson said. "It's awesome that the high school was with me on this to get all these kids in here. It's awesome that we can get the kids educated on what their options are and their future outside of their sport."

Forty-seven boys attended last year's inaugural camp at American Methodist Episcopal Church on North Hamilton Road in Columbus. There were 104 at this year's camp at Scioto.

"We're telling the kids there's more to sports than the game and if you don't learn the stuff that's really important then football doesn't matter and soccer doesn't matter," said Deborah Johnson, a coordinator of the event and Richardson's mother. "Sports won't matter if you're not doing the right thing, if you're not a gentleman and if you don't have good grades, so we're teaching them how to do those other things right."

Those messages were conveyed by guest speakers who included area court, police and military officials.

Michael Carter, who will be entering sixth grade at Tree of Life, said he learned a lot from the presentations.

"I like the way they're talking, like mentors and the way you have to do better stuff and try to do the right thing," he said.

Sam Tickle, who served 11 years in the U.S. Navy, began the camp by sharing stories and a video on his completion of 30 sports in 30 cities in 30 days. Tickle's presentation, part of the EAS Unstoppable Tour, focused on proper sports nutrition and setting and achieving goals.

"The one thing that I wanted to push is your brain gives up before your body gives up," Tickle said. "You can push yourself a lot further when you just set your mind to it. If you're able to train your brain to realize that pain is just temporary and that if you focus on a goal, your body will perform the way it needs to."

Current and former members of the Ohio State football program also shared their experiences. That group included Taylor Rice, a 2008 Scioto graduate and junior defensive back with the Buckeyes.

The camp also featured NFL players including Mike Mitchell, a safety with Oakland and a former teammate of Richardson, who was drafted by the Raiders in 2007.

"The one message that I want kids to take away from this camp is never underestimate yourself and know your options," Richardson said. "You can do anything you want to do, but you have to know what to do."