Angeli’s Camp of Champs returns to U.P.


For The Camp of Champs

NORWAY — A once highly popular summer youth basketball camp will make its return to Dickinson County and the Upper Peninsula this summer.

Back after a 21-year hiatus is Jamie Angeli’s Camp of Champs. The 2024 version will be held July 15-18 at Norway-Vulcan Area Schools.

“I feel incredibly excited and fortunate to be able to bring my basketball camp back to the U.P. after all of these years. I’m looking forward to seeing so many parents who were once campers themselves, now creating a new Camp of Champs era for their children,” said Angeli, an Iron River native and West Iron County and University of Wisconsin-Stout basketball standout.

The Camp of Champs made several stops over the the two decades it was held, including at Crystal Falls, Iron River, Iron Mountain, Kingsford, Norway, Bark River and Ironwood in the U.P., and Florence and Niagara, Wisconsin.

Angeli, a former varsity boys basketball coach at both Norway and Kingsford high schools, left the U.P. in 1997 to join head coach Steve Lavin’s staff at UCLA.

Since the last Camp of Champs in 2003, Angeli has made various coaching stops, literally all over the world.

“Since leaving UCLA I have been a professional head coach in the Middle Eastern countries of Qatar and Kuwait, and then made assistant coaching stops at the University of South Florida and Seattle University,” Angeli said in a recent phone interview.

In 2011, Angeli settled in as the women’s head basketball coach and associate director of athletics at the City College of New York in New York City, and has been employed there for the past 13 years.

In 2019, Angeli retired from coaching at CCNY and remains as the associate director of athletics.

“I think the biggest thing I’ve missed the most in the last 21 years is the daily interactions with the campers. More specifically, watching them develop confidence and enjoyment for this great game,” Angeli stated.

The camp will have two daily sessions for the entire four days.

Session 1 will be boys and girls grades 4-8, beginning at 9 a.m. CDT with early drop-off with an open gym shooting session, which is optional. Camp time will be 10 a.m. to 1 p.m.

Session 2 will boys and girls grades 9-12, beginning at 1 p.m. with an optional early drop off open gym shooting session. Camp time is 2 to 5 p.m.

“What I hope to accomplish this summer is to continue to create an atmosphere of fun and challenging competition while providing suggestions and insight as to how the boys and girls can become better basketball players,” Angeli said.

“We do some things a bit differently than years past, like adding a Pop-a-Shot Station, an end of the week entertaining camp highlight video, and of course everyone’s favorite, the ‘Check Your Cool Jacket at the Door Dance Exhibition.’

“I’m pretty confident no one will jump from my camp directly to the NBA or WNBA, but it has always been my camp goal to hear feedback from parents after the camp that their child has been practicing basketball almost every day since the camp ended. It’s that kind of love for the game that I try to instill in every camper.”

Angeli has secured sponsorship donations from Krist Oil, Iron River; Riverside Pizzeria of Green Bay, Wis.; MBM Construction, Kingsford; Back in Motion Physical Therapy, Kingsford; Knight Owl Sports Bar of Norway; Domino’s Pizza, Iron Mountain; and The Institute of Clinical Excellence of Fort Collins, Colorado.

Coleman Engineering of Iron Mountain, First Bank, Upper Peninsula, as well as Paul Fornetti Dentistry of Iron Mountain have also recently joined the sponsor list.

The camp already has approximately 100 campers registered in just over three weeks online. The projection is around 150 campers.

To register for the camp or to become a camp sponsor go to https://virtualbasketballcoach.com/summercamp.html


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