The future of NRL were put through their paces at a three-day camp at Farrer high school in Tamworth as part of the Newcastle Knights' Elite Pathways Development Program.
More than 30 dedicated 15, 16 and 17-year-olds gave up the beginning of their school holidays last week to learn everything footy on and off the field.
Elite Pathways Development Coach Scott Dureau said it's a good time to educate up and coming players.
"We went to Farrer on Monday, did a lot of footy stuff and off field stuff about leadership, life choices and other different things," Dureau said.
"We run a 12-week program where we bring players in every Wednesday and they train with us, and part of that program is a three-day camp in the first week of the school holidays."
The camp at Farrer saw some highly talented youngsters.
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"We had six that came to our camp that were away last week at the Australian under 15s championships that were involved in the NSW teams. We had three guys that were involved in the NSW under 16s Origin and then another couple of guys that were involved in the under 18s Origin as only 17-year old's this year," Dureau said.
"Definitely a talented group of young players which is why we dedicate this extra time and effort to try and make them as good as we possibly can."
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Each year the program is designed to identify and develop players, to feed into the Club's junior squads.
It's a start to moving them up the ranks to hopefully one day play NRL.
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"This program is designed to get a little jump start on next year's competition for our 16s and 18s," Dureau explained.
"The guys who are 16 and 17 will make up the 18s next year and then the 15-year-olds will be the 16s team next year, so it's a good opportunity for them to get to know each other a little and understand our expectations at the Club.
"We teach them a little bit about the history of the Club, what's involved and what it takes to hopefully reach their goal of being an NRL player."
Not just across the Hunter region, the program scout's players from everywhere.
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"In the Under 15s, 16s or 18s program, we had six guys from outside the area, four from New Zealand, one from Inverell and one from Tamworth that came to experience what it's like," added Dureau.
"We have a look at them, potentially move them out here if we think that is a possibility for them and their families, but some of the kids are contracted with us already and the others are from the region that have been identified through school football or their Club football."
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