New Saints coach has history with the school
by Robert Joseph Baker | September 1, 2016 2:46 am
Last Updated: August 30, 2016 at 11:48 pm
Clarendon Hall varsity football coach Ronald Way is no stranger to the Saints.
He’s been around Clarendon Hall athletics for nearly the past decade, serving as the head baseball coach and as an assistant with the football team.
So sliding into the head coaching position is just a natural fit, he said.
“I’m heading into my 19th year of coaching,” he said. “My background is mostly in baseball; however, in the last eight years, I have headed the lower school football program. For the last two years, I have assisted in the varsity football program at Clarendon Hall.”
With this being his first year as head coach, Way said he is not setting goals like most coaches do.
“(It’s not about) winning X number of games, making the playoffs, etc.,” he said. “To me, those goals are a given. I basically want to go in and teach the game of football and build character among our players. If the players and assistant coaches buy into my system, learn the game and play it the way we need to play, wins and playoffs with come on their own.”
Way said that his players and staff are “very familiar (with) the eight-man game.”
“Clarendon Hall has been in the eight-man football for seven of the last nine years that I have been around, and for those who don’t know, eight-man is not a whole lot different than 11-man,” he said. “The offense is very similar, just a few less players. The biggest difference is on defense.”
Way said that eight-man football asks more of the players on defense during a game.
“For example, in 11-man, your cornerback is typically a cornerback; however, in eight-man, a cornerback is also an outside linebacker. He has to immediately read the play and cover the run or the pass, and sometimes do both.”
Way said that with the program “graduating a high number of quality players” over the past few years, this year’s team will be in “building mode.”
“I don’t like the term rebuilding,” he said. “But we will be installing an entirely new system, so everyone will be learning and we will have to learn in a hurry.”
Way said that only one of the four current senior players is a returning starter.
“Two others have played football in the past, but did not play last year, and one is a new student at the school,” he said. “I expect that these players will join in and help lead the team and set examples of how to do things the right way. We have a large number of younger players that will be looking, imitating and searching for this leadership.”
Way said that he’s going to heavily focus on a motto he heard from Coastal Carolina Coach Joe Moglia.
“He calls it BAM, which stands for ‘Be a Man,’” Way said. “This goes back to my philosophy of character building. Being a Man includes many Godly features, like respect, doing your task at hand, having and showing character no matter what the situations, and doing the right thing, even when no one else is looking.”
Way said that the season will be a success, “if I can instill these characteristics in these young men.”
The Saints start their season 7:30 p.m. Friday with a home game against Beaufort Academy.