During the holiday break, Christopher “C.J.” George, Jr, age 9, of Chesterfield joined dozens of peers of his age group nationwide for the 3rd annual Offense-Defense Youth All-American Bowl held at the Dallas Cowboys Stadium in Arlington, Texas. The week-long series of events in an East meets West clash led up to the nationally-televised, 6th annual Offense-Defense All-American Bowl, an All-Star football game of similar format showcasing 80 of the top high school seniors in the county. C.J. was notified of his selection in October. He was No. 43 on the East team. His team lost to the West Team #4; the score was 6 to 7.
C.J. is a player for Matoaca Youth Athletics Association. He was chosen Most Valuable Player (MVP) at the Offense-Defense camp in July at the College of William and Mary, and was selected from a group of young athletes numbering in the thousands across the country to participate in this one-of-a-kind All-American game.
C.J. is a fourth grade student at Ettrick Elementary School. An A/B student who loves math, he has been playing association football for four years.
C.J.’s mom, Gina George said the All-American Bowl was to originally be played in Myrtle Beach, the headquarters for the Offense-Defense camp program. When they were notified in October she said there was a change in the location to the Dallas Cowboys Stadium. When she found out she said, “Oh my gosh! I am a huge Dallas fan. And my husband is a Redskin fan. So it was like, oh my goodness, we have got to make this happen.” The whole family was able to make the trip, which included mom and dad, Christopher Sr. and C.J.’s sister, Lauryn.
C.J. said it was fun and exciting being out on the Cowboys’ field. And said he sometimes thought about how it might be playing in an NFL league. He likes to tackle and run the ball.
Another exciting part of the trip for C.J. was when he met Terrell Owens and several other retired NFL players and got their autographs on a football to bring home.
“It was a very exciting time for us to be able to go,” said Gina George. “I sent a thank you note to all the coaches at Matoaca because I think it really helped him with their guidance, teaching, their camps and discipline at that program that really helped him at the camp he went to for him to win the award for the MVP and that is how he really got the invite. I have a great appreciation for the coaches and the parents who support the Matoaca association.” George said football is something that C.J. is interested in and they try to support him as much as they can. “It is a great exercise avenue [sports] and something they (C.J. and Lauryn) can do as an extra-curricular activity.” C.J. and Lauryn are both playing in the Ettrick association basketball program this winter.
Offense-Defense Sports has been running full-contact football instructional camps for the past 43 years and currently operates in approximately 40 camp locations nationwide every summer.