An in-state product who is in the NFL was back in his home state on Saturday. Former SC State Bulldog and current Green Bay Packer linebacker Joe Thomas Jr held a youth football camp at Blackville High School.
Almost 200 kids were at the Blackville practice fields and they were excited to execute drills alongside some pros.
Joe and other professional players including Rafeal Bush taught campers the fundamentals of the game and some important life lessons.
"At a camp like this you learn the fundamentals, you get to learn how to play on a team, you get to see guys from the same place they came from and they made it out. So it's good motivation for the kids and most importantly man it's about having fun," Joe said.
If you remember Joe Thomas Sr played for Buddy Pugh and the Bulldogs last year. He became the oldest man to play NCAA division 1 football. Joe Sr., is also a SC State graduate and his son has been inspired by his father's journey because it has impacted his life and others.
"He never been to college. He had people doubting him, you know people talking about him but he just kept to it. For me it just instill like, the dedication to your dream. Whatever you put your mind to, you can do it as long as you believe in it," Joe said about his father. "I'm happy for him. It's just motivation to a lot people man. A lot of people that feel like they're too old to do things or they're not big enough or strong enough to do things and it's just been a big motivation to everybody. "
The Green Bay linebacker is going into his third year into the NFL and he also has an inspiring journey to his dreams.
"I came from here Blackville, South Carolina. I walked on at South Carolina State, ended up earning a scholarship, I was undrafted going into the NFL and I ending up getting a starting job and it's all about the hard work and dedication to the craft. That's all I'm trying to instill in these kids, hard work and dedication and most importantly get your education. Because that's what boosts your whole career is your education."