YORK — The York Comprehensive High School football team used their open date last week in a positive way.
“The extra week of practice allowed the coaches to re-evaluate personnel and to work on the things we saw in the Chester game,” coach Bobby Carroll said. “We also were able to devote more time to the fundamentals of the game. Football is all about the basic fundamentals.”
Even coming early in the season, the rest week is beneficial, he said. “We have some minor bumps and bruises but should be OK injury-wise for Friday’s Boiling Springs game,” said Carroll.
Because of the open week, Carroll made the trek to Columbia last week to watch the South Carolina Gamecocks defeat the North Carolina Tar Heels to open the college football season.
He saw Jadeveon Clowney, the Gamecock All-American defensive end. Carroll coached Clowney while he spearheaded the South Pointe defense.
With the extra week of practice and the Columbia trip behind him, Carroll shifts his focus to Friday’s clash with the offense-minded Boiling Springs Bulldogs.
He accompanied other Cougar coaches in scouting Boiling Springs, witnessing the Bulldogs’ 40-13 thrashing of Nation Ford.
“Boiling Springs has an explosive offense,” he said. “They execute extremely well.”
Though nine YCHS defensive starters graduated, the Cougars are ranked No. 12 in the Associated Press South Carolina High School football poll.
And there are weapons in the offense.
Senior Jerome Pettiway and junior DeShaw Andrews rotate at the quarterback position. Each is big and physical, with a strong throwing arm.
Ryan Moore, a 200-pound bulldozer who has grit and speed, is a premier running back.
Markel Castle and Daurice Simpson are wide receivers who often move the chains after the catch.
While still looking for improvement on both sides of the ball, Carroll lauded the players for meeting the challenge against 3A powers Union County and Chester, ranked No. 4 and 6, respectively, in the state poll.
“We have young players who’ve bought into the system,” he said.
Carroll said the second game of the season is pivotal.
“There’s a well-known cliché among coaches that says how much improvement is made from week one to week two is vital to a team’s success,” he said.