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Rodney Adams jumps to lift spirits of kids who lost loved ones

Rodney Adams' workout will take place today at the NFL scouting combine in Indianapolis, where the former Lakewood High and USF star hopes to soar higher as a draft prospect.

CHARLIE KAIJO | Times

Rodney Adams' workout will take place today at the NFL scouting combine in Indianapolis, where the former Lakewood High and USF star hopes to soar higher as a draft prospect.

4

March

I used to think that I could not go on
And life was nothing but an awful song
But now I know the meaning of true love
I'm leaning on the everlasting arms
If I can see it, then I can do it
If I just believe it, there's nothing to it
I believe I can fly
I believe I can touch the sky
I think about it every night and day (Night and day)
Spread my wings and fly away
I believe I can soar
I see me running through that open door
I believe I can fly
I believe I can fly
I believe I can fly – R Kelly

Rodney Adams will touch the sky today, and with every inch, he will lift the spirits of children and teenagers who have recently suffered the death of a parent, sibling or primary care giver through a one-week retreat at Experience Camps.

Adams workout will take place today at the NFL scouting combine in Indianapolis, where the former Lakewood High and University of South Florida star hopes to soar higher as a draft prospect. He is 85 percent to his goal of $91 per vertical inch in an effort to raise $3,000 through donations and pledges for each vertical inch through Pledgit.org.

The purpose of Experience Camps is very close to Adam’s heart. His mother, Michelle Conway Scott, lost her life when the car she was a passenger in crashed outside of Atlanta in November of 2013. To add to the suffering, Adams’ cousin was behind the wheel of the vehicle and charged with DUI and first-degree vehicular homicide.

At the time of his mother’s death, Adams’ was a freshman football player at the University of Toledo. Needing to be around loved ones, he transferred to South Florida near his hometown and was granted a hardship waiver that enabled him to play immediately without having to sit out a seasons per NCAA rules.

“It was hard. I was kind of lost,’’ Adams said. “I’m not going to lie. It was tough. I didn’t want to go back (to Toledo). I needed to be at home and around family. I needed time to re-focus and get my life together.’’

Adams decision to go to USF provided more comfort. As fate would have it, his receivers coach was former Florida State standout Ron Dugans, who played three seasons with the Cincinnati Bengals. Dugans had recently lost his 8-year-old daughter in a 2008 school bus accident.

“He could really relate to everything I was going through,’’ Adams said. “And he was one of the main people I would lean on when I was dealing with what happened with my mom. We shared all our experiences and it helped me get through a really difficult time.’’

The 6-foot-1, 190-pound Adams is part of a deep draft class of receivers but earned an invitation to the combine this week with and outstanding 2016 season in which he broke the Bulls single season record for receptions with 67 and matched his career high with 822 receiving yards that he set a year earlier. Adams is projected to become a third or fourth-round pick.

But elevating his draft stock is secondary this week to raising awareness to the plight of children who have lost a loved one.

“It’s the need I felt, and having children that go through that, it’s not easy at all,’’ Adams said. “It’s not. And I just want to let them know that they’re not alone in that process. I dealt with it and you can overcome it and still have dreams to chase. I’m still chasing mine.’’

To contribute, go to https://pledgeit.org/rodney-adams.

[Last modified: Saturday, March 4, 2017 10:17am]

    

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