The wait for high school football is almost over!
The hours in the weight room, not to mention the blood, sweat and tears from pre-season practice will culminate on Aug. 11 for three Clarendon County teams at the second annual FTC Jamboree at Manning High School’s Ramsey Stadium.
Clarendon Hall, Laurence Manning and East Clarendon will take to the field in what organizers are hoping is a packed stadium.
Clarendon Hall is scheduled to open action at 6 p.m. against Williamsburg Academy. LMA will play host to Orangeburg-Wilkinson at about 7:30 and the Wolverines will face Ridgeland at 8:15 in the finale.
The format of the matchups will be two 12-minute quarters. Tickets can be purchased in advance at the participating schools and the Maning High Fieldhouse for $10. They will be $12 at the gate.
Clarendon County School District Athletic Director and Manning head coach Reggie Kennedy said he likes the direction the jamboree is headed.
“We are very excited to bring the 2nd Annual FTC Football Jamboree to our community this year,” he said. “A special thanks to FTC for bringing this event to community. We are looking forward to kicking off the season with this event.”
Clarendon Hall will have a new coach at the helm in Todd Larrimer. This will be his first time as the football head coach but served as the baseball coach last season.
“I’m excited about it (the upcoming season,)” he said. “I’m surrounded by a good staff, so I’m in good hands. And I feel really good about our senior class.”
Larrimer mentioned several of the seniors by name before transitioning to the jamboree and playing in front of a crowd. He said practicing against each other at the friendly confines of the school is one thing, but this environment will bring a different challenge.
“That’s what I’m thinking about a lot,” he said. “I’m interested in how they will respond, but we are confident they’ll respond how we want them to.”
Laurence Manning returns head coach Will Furse, who said he is ready to get the season going, starting with the jamboree.
“It’s a great opportunity,” Furse said. “I love that FTC has this jamboree. It’s going to be a big challenge for us. For coaches, it makes us make sure we have everything ready for the season. We’ll be in headsets and not on the field. They (Orangeburg-Wilkinson) have a lot of talent and they are extremely well coached. They have a reputation of having players everywhere. We’ve got to play good football to compete with these guys.”
A new face at East Clarendon is head coach Larry Cornelius, who comes to the Wolverines after a stint at Lakewood in Sumter. He also brings a wealth of experience after serving as the head coach at several other programs.
“I’m very excited about bringing a new brand of football to East Clarendon,” he said. “We have been working all summer, but it’ll be great to go against another team. But in the jamboree, what’s most important is what EC does, not who the other team is."