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Hatcher learns from legends at Manning Passing Academy

Texas State Football
Wednesday, June 29, 2022

Heading into his first season at Texas State, junior quarterback Layne Hatcher went to work with one of the legendary families in football.

Hatcher attended the Manning Passing Academy over the weekend, a four-day camp that’s held annually at Nicholls State for football players between the ages of those entering the eighth grade and seniors-to-be in high school. Each year, around 40 college quarterbacks are invited to the camp to help coach alongside Archie, Cooper, Peyton, and Eli Manning.

The Bobcat signal-caller was one of the few invited, joining Georgia’s Stetson Bennett, Alabama’s Bryce Young and Ohio State’s CJ Stroud among others.

“You’re part camp counselor,” Hatcher said. “And then in the afternoons, you’re working out with the Manning brothers and they’re coaching you up and then you have some social events, networking stuff, meeting a lot of QB trainers that are across the country working out with the Mannings. You get to have kind of an all-around experience of coaching and working out and then meeting people and then having, like, just meetings about football and talking ball.”

The Little Rock, Ark. native went to the camp for the first time last year. He said he was a bit nervous, not knowing what to expect out of the experience. He mostly just listened, trying to soak everything in.

This year, with a better understanding of the camp and who all would be there, Hatcher found himself enjoying everything a bit more.

“The great thing about this year is, it was a lot of guys that were there the year before, so I had a lot of friends going into it,” Hatcher said. “So there wasn’t that nervousness or didn’t know what to expect. This year, I knew what was going on, I knew when I had to be where. And so, it was just a lot more fun, I made a lot more connections this year with different people. I’m going to train with a guy this weekend that I met down there at the Manning camp, I’m going to Memphis to train with him.”

The college quarterbacks did get to participate in a passing demonstration called “Friday Night Lights,” which consisted of throwing different route types and putting on an accuracy competition. 

Hatcher’s favorite part of the weekend, though, was just being around the Mannings.

“I think that any question you could have about football or life with football or life after football or life during football, they can answer those questions,” Hatcher said. “And anybody who plays football wants to have a career and a life like Peyton and Eli and Archie Manning. And so, just having them and then having them coach you up — you know, you take a drop a million times but now you’re having Peyton Manning coach you up on how he did it against the Panthers in the Super Bowl. So there’s an experience level there that’s different than anything we’ve had. And so it’s cool to just have that.

“And then you get to ask him about life, too. You get to talk about how they handled coming off a bye week going into a game, what film they watched, how they got ready. There’s just an unlimited amount of experience there that you can ask questions off of.”

Hatcher feels like he built up a lot of confidence by attending the camp this year. The Arkansas State transfer is hoping it’ll translate at Texas State this fall.

“It gives you a lot of insight into how to act and how to go through a football season,” Hatcher said. “It’s just a great experience and it was a great honor to be there And hopefully, I can go back next year.”

San Marcos Record

(512) 392-2458
P.O. Box 1109, San Marcos, TX 78666