Friday, July 29, 2011
It's back. The helmets were strapped up, the jerseys were on, and the high school kids hit the football fields Friday morning, at least in the Palmetto State. Needless to say, the players were plenty excited.
Midland Valley's Trey Walker says, "I was up all night just waiting to get on the field."
Silver Bluff's Rekem McCorkle adds, "The adrenaline's pumping. I couldn't wait to get out here."
"I couldn't wait to lace 'em up this morning. I woke up an hour early," says Wagener-Salley's Darryl Bynem.
And it was much the same for Midland Valley's Jamaree Drayton. He says, "I couldn't sleep none. I stayed up almost until the time to come to practice."
You think these guys are ready for some football? Practice got going Friday morning, and teams took full advantage. With a new season comes plenty of optimism.
"It's our turn. We've got a lot of people and a lot of senior stepping up," says Barnwell's Jake Parler. "We've got a lot of good leadership on this team, and I'm really excited about that."
Wagener-Salley is trying to making a jump into relevancy this year as well, and Bynem believes the hype. He says, "This is our year. It's time to step. It's time to make a commitment. We've got to work hard, and we'll see what happens."
The colors and logos are the same, but the players have changed. Last year's stars and leaders are gone, and new ones are ready to make their mark.
Walker was once the team comedian, but now he's changing his tune.
"This year, I'm going to have to be more of a leader instead of the clown of the team like I usually am," says Walker. "Other than that, I just want to be a good leader for the team."
For those teams that have been to the top, it's time to prove they aren't planning on coming back down anytime soon.
Williston-Elko is one of those programs. The Blue Devils have played for two straight state championships, winning one, but inexperience could end that streak. Senior Rokeem Williams disagrees.
"We've been waiting for this for a long time. Coming back this year, we've got new guys. We lost 14 seniors, so we have a little statement to prove this year. It's just a point that we wanna prove that we gotta prove that we can get back there," Williams says.
Really, the next three weeks are just the appetizer. Now, on august 19th?
Wagener-Salley senior Bruce Corley says, "I can't wait until the first game. What do we got? 21 days left? We're just going to go out there and do our thing."