PENSACOLA — Charlie Ward’s efforts to reach area youth began Saturday with a large wow factor involved.
Ward, the new Pensacola Washington High football coach and 1993 Heisman Trophy winner, arranged to have the current Heisman Trophy winner Jameis Winston help him with connecting to kids.
The two generations of Florida State’s football success and two-sport stardom spoke with kids and parents during the first Charlie Ward Mentor Leadership Football Camp at Washington High’s football field. All of the kids were in first through eighth grade.
No teenagers or high school kids were permitted to avoid any potential issues with NCAA recruiting rules.
“Mr. Charlie Ward is basically my mentor,” Winston said, prior to signing autographs and posing for photos for every kid and their parents at the event. “He has helped me through the season. Obviously he has been there and done everything I dreamed to do and it happened (winning Heisman, national title) for me last year.
“I wanted to support him like he supports me.”