By Bryan Stieneker
Eagle Editorial Board
Yet another Eagle student-athlete has
committed to playing Division 1 NCAA sports.
Over the summer, senior Campbell Clarkson,
committed to playing football for the Air Force
Clarkson is one of multiple St. Thomas
student-athletes in the past few years who have
gone on to play college sports at the division 1 level, and athletic director Mike Netzel has been very
pleased with the results.
“It’s a great representation of where our athletic program is,” Netzel said. “To have somebody that
interested in a young man, particularly a place like Air Force Academy, is pretty tremendous.”
The interest Air Force has had in Clarkson certainly is not unrequited.
“I’ve always been big into military service,” Clarkson said. “Air Force has been one of my top choices
for college since middle school.”
Those who know Campbell well are not surprised that he ended up at a school as prestigious as the
Air Force Academy.
“He has really grown up in coaching offices,” Netzel said. “So he’s a lot more advanced in the way he
talks, he thinks, which probably makes him a great candidate for one of the service academies.”
Campbell considers Air Force the best place for him to succeed, not only as a football player, with an
offense predicated on quickness over size, but also as a student and a person.
“Because of their triple option offense, I, a 240-245 pound offensive lineman can still be successful in
a Division 1 program,” Clarkson said. “I can go anywhere on the offensive line and still be a
contributor because that offense allows me to do so.”
Not many are willing to endure the rigor of life and academics at a service academy, but Clarkson is
ready to embrace it.
“One of the things that attracts me is how regimented life is,” Clarkson said, “You have a schedule.
There’s no room to be lazy and miss a class, so it keeps you on track.”
The sense of fellowship and camaraderie at Air Force Academy, and all service academies for that
matter, is something Clarkson is familiar with from his St. Thomas days, and also something he looks
forward to experiencing more of in his college career.
“It’s all one brotherhood and sisterhood, ” Clarkson said. “You’re with your company and division for
your entire four years.”
Clarkson certainly has been a tremendous presence on campus, both in the classroom and on the
football field. He is a member of the National Honor Society, and has been involved in student
council and various clubs. Also, he has played on the offensive line for the varsity football team since
his sophomore year, in addition to being a varsity wrestler and a member of the track and field team.