Bradley-Bourbonnais track star earns high praise from coach, paper
Most people got to be around Camron Harrell only for a few moments in the last four years.
That's because the Bradley-Bourbonnais Community High School (BBCHS) track star was usually far out in front of them on the racetrack. The recent graduate didn't lose a single 100- or 200-meter dash to anyone in the area during his four years at BBCHS.
On the other hand, coach Freddie Dudek kiddingly told the Kankakee Times that he might have seen too much of Harrell.
"I always kind of joke about it with the team whenever we have to talk about him," Dudek said. "I always say I spent more time around him than I probably did my own wife."
Harrell, who will attend the University of Iowa on a football scholarship, was recently named the boys' track Athlete of the Year by Kankakee's Daily Journal.
"It was awesome coaching him," Dudek said. "His talent level was off the chart. But his work ethic, his personality, the type of person he was ... it was just awesome to be around him for four years. He never missed a practice, didn't skip a set, and gave his best effort. He just really, really enjoyed being a part of any team he was on and just our school community in general. It was so nice to see him get recognized because of the person he was."
Dudek said Harrell's dedication helped him grow into the young man and star athlete he is now.
"Physically, you can tell that he just developed his body through hard work," Dudek said. "He lived in the weight room in the off-season. Our strength coach is probably one of the best in the business at the high school level, and Camron did a lot of work with him. He went from coming in as a skinny 140-pound kid to [weighing] 195 pounds when he left ... and he was faster. He worked his butt off."
As for Harrell's new life at the University of Iowa, Dudek said his former star is excited about more than playing football.
"He really gives back with volunteering," Dudek said. "I know one of the biggest things with Iowa is the amount of community service they do. He was excited to help out with the children's hospital. I can't express enough that he's an amazing person. Not only is he a great athlete, but he just loved his time at our school. I think he cares more about his coaches than anyone I've ever seen. He loves his coaches, he loves his teachers, and he's been working with students in our school who have special needs. He's an amazing person, and it's awesome to see his story getting out there."
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