Adding some padding: Coaches fill up to talk rules, Maryville Orthopaedic Clinic Prep Football Jamboree
BY Marcus Fitzsimmons | (email@example.com)
Maryville Orthopaedic Clinic knows how to make football coaches happy — a good meal.
The football staffs from Alcoa, Greenback, Heritage, Maryville and William Blount got a two-for Monday night at Maryville High School. Not only did Aubrey’s chip in a hearty dinner to accompany the information meeting on the Maryville Orthopaedic Clinic Prep Football Jamboree but the Blount County officials added the update on new rules and priorities for officials this season — a required portion of continuing education for coaching staffs.
The annual event marked the end of the first day teams could reach the final acclimation step for the fall season as teams put on full pads for the first time this season.
“I think just getting going. The new rules let you get going with helmets and shoulder pads the week before and I like that change. It makes today not such a big shock as far as full pads go,” Maryville coach and jamboree host George Quarles told The Daily Times. “I think today, just says, ‘It’s time.’ You just get going. ... It’s an exciting time, no question about it.”
Maryville will host the jamboree in a rare repeat after rain forced Heritage to move the jamboree to Maryville’s then new turf last year. The coaches agreed to keep the rotation in order with Maryville hosting this season as scheduled and the event moving to William Blount in 2014.
“It made sense last year to move it here with the weather and this year it’s our turn so we’re happy to host,” Quarles said. “Usually the home team gets two games, however we did it we’d get somebody we play in the regular season. Since Alcoa and Heritage are playing again this year, we’re taking Heritage and Greenback.”
William Blount at Alcoa are matched in the first quarter with the pass, punt and kick competitions scheduled for the second quarter as well as the fastest lineman and fastest back races. Maryville plays Greenback first in the third quarter and Heritage in the fourth.
“We’ll do what we do our kids are really good about competing no matter who we’re playing so we’ll go out and have fun. It’s the jamboree,” Greenback coach Jason Hicks said. “We’ve been going hard at it since January and I told the kids today I hear a lot of coaches that say, “it starts today’ but for us it really did start in January.
“It was good just to get the pads back on and get out there.”
Practice ran a little bit long at Heritage and the Mountaineer staff arrived just in time to get their share from Aubrey’s offerings and get situated for the rules portion of the meeting. The reason for the tardiness was evident later as the staff couldn’t wait to break down some of the things they saw from the team.
“The favorite part of putting on full pads this year for me was to see the numbers we had,” Heritage coach Tim Hammontree said. “We’re at 68, even though we’ve incorporated those ninth graders in, and because of those numbers we were able to run our drills at a more brisk pace. We were able to coach a little bit better because we had numbers to look at. When we got down to doing one-on-one and three-on-three stuff, we had numbers so we could look at those guys and put them in a depth chart finally. That was the most exciting thing to see that many young men out there full pads ready to go today.
“I think it was one of the best quality work outs we’ve had so far.”
The regular season opens Aug. 23 and reviews of the heat index and severe weather were a part of the rules review. The TSSAA has joined numerous sports organizations in addressing concussion concerns and those new policies were first on the list as well as the clarification of the rules on what happens when a player’s helmet comes off during a play.
Tickets for the jamboree are $7 for school age and up. Alcoa and Maryville are currently scheduled as the home teams, with Heritage, William Blount and Greenback slated to grace the visitor sideline during the jamboree.