July 22, 2010
MILWAUKEE - This year marks the 22nd Annual Camp Shutout, which is now the largest goalkeeper camp in the country. The camp was founded by Marquette University's associate head men's soccer coach Stan Anderson.
The camp focuses on all aspects of goalkeeping and welcomes campers of all ages and abilities. Recently coach Anderson took some time to answer a few questions about the camp.
Q: How did Camp Shutout start and when was the first year of camp?
A: "It started in 1989, Louis [Bennett] and I were playing together with the Croatian Eagles and then he was running a camp and he needed a goalkeeper portion covered. I was young, keen and eager and I said sure let's do it and frankly it started with three goalkeepers and an actor, literally an actor, who was a nephew of one of the staff coaches. We wanted to have four to train, so three goalkeepers and an actor and that's what we had all week. That was really the impetuous that was the start."
Q: How many campers do you have at this camp and how has it grown into one of the largest goalkeeper camps in he country?
A: "We have 176 here now and we could have had 185. ACL injuries and progression through the ODP program it ended up a couple kids couldn't make it. We have 176 here now and it's grown exponentially over the years.
For many years we'd have 30 a year when Lou had 90 field players and we kind of married with his program BASP and Camp Shutout was married into that. So we had 30 and they had 90 and it stayed that way many years. Basically in '01 we started the progression to have it grow and it's grown exponentially since."
Q: With 176 campers, how do you as the director ensure each individual has a quality learning experience?
A: "Basically it's the staff I overlook it, but we have staff here that has been here over dozens of years. That in and of itself is a quality control, because I find out if the kids are having a good experience with them and I know that they are.
Experience is part of it then leaving here becoming a better goalkeeper is a huge part of it. We expose them to new staff, but I think one of the other things is and it's probably not unique but we take people that have been through the camp as a camper or keeper to learn and we then progress them to become a staff assistant. So they then link with a staff coach and then once they finish school that's when they become a staff member.
Now it's grown and we've been able to grow staff-wise but it's getting to a point, and it's a good problem to have, where we may not have room for all those guys that want to become staff assistants and staff members."
Q: What kind of things can a goalkeeper expect to learn at Camp Shutout?
A: "Anything you're going to do as a goalkeeper. It's a unique position. It's different from the other ten on the field in so many ways. The way we use our body, the fact that we have the ability to use our hands, generally we'll stay in one area, how we kick the ball is unique, all those things are unique so those things we learn. We throw our hands at people's feet and our heads are obviously in harms way so we find ways, today as we're talking, we're doing breakaways and close range shots.
So a lot of kids come in and go to their knees and they're putting their hands out the wrong way, they expose their head, they expose their grape, their dome, whatever you want to call it, they expose their wrists poorly, they'll turn their back, so we put them into a situation where they don't do any of that and they become brave and understand that its my feet and my hands and I need to go the right way and I'll generally be safer. "
Q: What about the Marquette campus and Valley Fields make this an ideal setting for this type of camp?
A: "Well it's great because it's Marquette, it's in the BIG EAST and people know and love Marquette, so that in it of itself is cool. Secondly, Marquette has made an investment into turf fields and for us that allows us to be able to run the camp here. If we didn't have these two turf fields we wouldn't be running the camp here. If they were grass fields we can't run the camp.
If you were to sit here and look and have these guys be in the same area where they're working they're going to absolutely tear it apart and a little bit of rain would make it even more difficult if we were on grass. If we could destroy a field it would be great to run it on grass and have rain and such because that actually helps with some of our coaching but this really is the best of every world in that we can be on here.
Field turf has done a great job and this is so conducive for them. They may have to long sleeve it or wear some goalkeeper pants to protect themselves but they can go and get many, many repetitions and end up really coming out of the camp, we feel, as a much more improved goalkeeper."