INDIANAPOLIS — T.Y. Hilton surveyed the Lawrence North High School football field covered with more than 200 campers working in small groups with more than 30 area high school coaches Saturday morning and smiled.
"I had the same aspirations growing up," the Indianapolis Colts third-year wide receiver said. "Right now, they're hungry. They're out there just having fun, and I'm teaching them all the stuff that I can."
At this weekend's inaugural T.Y. Hilton Football ProCamp, that includes the rising star's signature touchdown celebration — a short burst of energy during which Hilton mimes his initials by waving his arms above his shoulders.
"Some of them got it down," he said with pride. "Some of them are still learning. But once they score, once they get in that red paint (in the stadium's end zones), they make sure they do it. So I'm staying on top of them for that."
A young Hilton attended a camp hosted by former NFL wide receiver Chad Johnson near his hometown of Miami, but he wanted to wait until he'd established himself in his professional career before starting his own camp.
A 2013 season during which he caught 82 passes for 1,083 yards and five touchdowns certainly fit the bill. Hilton asserted himself as Andrew Luck's primary target after veteran Reggie Wayne was lost to a knee injury on Oct. 20.
Three of Hilton's five 100-yard receiving games came during the final nine weeks of the regular season, and he set franchise records with 13 catches and 224 yards during the Colts' epic come-from-behind victory against Kansas City in an AFC Wild Card game in January.
Hilton began shadowing Wayne shortly after Indianapolis selected him in the third round of the 2012 draft, and he's excited about getting back on the field with the six-time Pro Bowler.