The 2018 off-season has had even more happenings in its second half than its first. Teams still looking for coaches, players picking up more offers, hundreds and hundreds of 7v7 games, and the itch for football season has still never been so real. We will take you through the stories you might have missed as we have less than a month away from the pads being broken out.
For the first half of our Off-Season Stories: https://coalfields.org/2018/05/22/off-season-stories-1-2/
Every season the state is riddled with programs struggling to replace coaches. As far as we know, there are four schools without a head coach. Logan, Wahama, Berkeley Springs, and St. Albans are four programs still searching for recently (with the exception of Wahama) departed coaches. Anytime a team has no coach in July, it puts a lot of pressure and potential struggles on the team going into August. We hope some positivity and the proper fits find their ways to all these schools. Tough situations.
Offers Still Picking Up
After Kerry Martin Jr. decommitted from Miami (OH) he has since picked some big offers including in-state West Virginia University. His brother, Kerion (class of 2020), most recently picked up an offer from Western Kentucky which will most likely lead to a floodgate of schools to come. Nick Malone, Zach Frazier, and Zeiqui Lawton all have picked up big-time Division One offers as well. Brenton Strange now has huge offers from Ohio State and Notre Dame. The class of 2018 and following are on a historic pace.
Several teams made noise through 7v7s. Many people take this with a grain of salt but nonetheless proves teams have the capacity to compete at the skill position. Hedgesville, Weir, and Mount View were very much talked about teams perfoming well in seven on sevens. This can at least answer the question whether or not they can replace their quarterbacks of 2017. Several elite teams are facing stellar quarterback battles such as Spring Valley’s Will Adkins and Nate Ellis, and Martinsburg’s Elijah Banks and Grant Harman. All have tremendous potential and played at a high level.
North/South and History Made
The 2018 North-South Classic was held at South Charleston due to a date change and reservation issues at Laidley Field. The overall consensus was that the new venue was quite successful and many of the players, parents, and staff enjoyed the set-up. The North won its third straight while East Hardy’s Brett Tharp garnered MVP honors. Also, in another change of pace, Hannan High School hired the first female head coach in state history in Kellie Thomas. She’s been around Hannan sports for awhile and is very well-respected. We wish her the best of luck.
Our Off-Season Experience
This has been our first off-season as a staff and it has been a blast. The player watch, clinics, and camps have all been successful and can be examined on our site bar. As many know, our current project is a massive preseason magazine including every team + articles + additional content. It is set to release digitally on the site mid-late July and preordering for paperback copies soon after so you all can have it before the season starts. We are still planning to do our regional previews and have put many hours into a really cool hype video for the season. Let’s get it.