Column: Former Haughton star Prescott wants to inspire kids to dream big

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Dak Prescott hosted his third youth football camp as a professional at his old stomping grounds, Haughton’s Harold E. Harlan Field, last week.

During his press conference, the fourth-year Dallas Cowboys quarterback answered some familiar questions patiently, questions that have been asked in years past.

He couldn’t name just one moment that stood out in his high school career. He said just being on the field with his teammates was his best memory.
He said he tried to keep up with the Bucs during the regular season and complimented Haughton’s current “amazing coaching staff.”

He talked about how thankful he was to have a platform where he can influence kids. He also spoke about how he “gained a sense of love for the game” watching his brothers play at Haughton.

“This is where my dreams all started,” he said. “Now to be here doing a camp for these kids on the same field means everything.”

Prescott was asked what his late mother Peggy, who died of cancer in 2013 and is never far from this thoughts, would think of him continuing to come back to Haughton each year and give back to the community.

“I’m sure she’d be proud honestly,” he said. “I don’t know what words I can say or what she’d say. My mom sat right over there on the 50-yard line. Every game for 10-plus years watched all three boys play.

“The thing about her being right there in the stands on the 50-yard line watching something different on this field, I know she’d be proud.”

The camp had another great turnout as area youths in grades 1-8 covered the field, going through a series of drills for about three hours.

Prescott said his goal is to instill confidence in the campers.

“I was once in their shoes,” he said. “From the oldest kid, to the youngest kid, when I was their age I thought I’d be an NFL quarterback, playing for the Cowboys.

“I want to make sure that if they’re that kid with the big dream or they’re thinking that big to realize there is no such thing as dreaming too big. There is no such thing as something you can’t do. Just believe that and have faith in themselves, they can accomplish anything they want.”

And Prescott made sure to mention that includes all aspects of life, not just athletics.

“I just make sure these kids believe in their dreams whether it’s going to the next level in football or whether it’s being an author or whether it’s being a teacher or architect. Whatever it may be, the dream doesn’t have to be football but they can accomplish it.”

— Russell Hedges is Sports Editor of the Bossier Press-Tribune. He may be reached at rhedges@bossierpress.com