Local legends return to Valley to give back to younger athletes

Published 4:00 pm Monday, May 20, 2024

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The 334 Boyz football camp held on Friday at Valley High School was one of the more unique football camps in the area. The camp was spearheaded by soon-to-be graduates, but several local legends also came back to give back to the community. 

Travaunta Abner and KD Hutchinson each came down to take part in the camp. Abner is currently a tight end at Miles College while Hutchinson is currently a wide receiver at Western Kentucky. 

Abner graduated from Lanett High School while Hutchinson started school at Valley before finishing up his high school career in Harris County. 

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Abner and Hutchinson have each seen several different aspects of the collegiate journey and have started to excel. Coming from Chambers County gives Abner and Hutchinson a unique perspective and ability to relate to local athletes. 

Abner saw a career year in 2023 as he finished with 358 receiving yards and four touchdowns as a junior. Hutchinson hit his stride in 2023 as well, finishing with 194 receiving yards and two touchdowns and was named to the Conference USA All-Freshmen team. 

Hutchinson and Abner have seen what it takes to come from Chambers County and find your way as a college athlete. 

“I just say determination,” Abner said. “There’s a lot of kids that don’t feel comfortable in themselves to go out and express themselves away from home. I feel like just having determination will carry you a long way.” 

Abner and Hutchinson were just two of several former athletes who helped lead the camp on Saturday. Jaden Hamlin, Jylan Ware and several others helped lead drills. 

Saturday served as an opportunity for Abner and Hutchinson to give back to the community, but it also gave the two an opportunity to reminisce on their glory days in Chambers County. 

“It was a lot of fun,” Abner said. “We’re always joking around as y’all can see. It was a lot of fun just being out here with young kids and giving out knowledge.” 

At the end of the camp, both Abner and Hutchinson took time to give a speech to the young athletes that showed up on Saturday. 

Hutchinson stressed the importance of building off the progress made through the drills and camp on Saturday. Hutchinson saw leaps in production during his later years of high school and second year in college. Hutchinson believes that effort and hard work should be the young athletes’ main takeaway from Saturday. 

“You’ve got to hone in on your craft,” Hutchinson said. “We were athletes in high school. In order to be one of those guys, you’ve got to work.”