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Marion High School

Marion hoping to be more competitive this fall

By C.R. Cumbee

Staff Writer

Marion—It was a tough season for the Marion football team in 2017, picking up just one win while competing with a young team.  Head coach Quin McCollum’s group gained valuable experience, but will still face an uphill climb as they are slated to move up to Class AAA.

“We took some lumps last year and we’re probably going to take some more this year.  We hope to be more competitive this year.  That’s the biggest thing.  But they’re still buying in,” McCollum said.

The Swamp Foxes took part in spring practice recently, with approximately 25 players participating.  Marion went with no contact to preserve their bodies and focused on learning.

“We do more of a modified spring ball.  We don’t go out there and tear it up too much because our numbers are low and injuries would set us back a lot.  We did a lot of teaching and went back and focused on the basics – proper alignments, proper steps, knowing the calls, knowing the system,” McCollum said.

Dooley Allen returns at quarterback, and the expectations are high for the rising junior.

“We’re looking for him to have a really big year this year.  He’s not that big to begin with, but he’s a little bigger now.  He’s had a good offseason and gotten stronger and faster,” McCollum said.

Running back/linebacker Christian James, offensive/defensive lineman Jakori Pouncey, punter/placekicker Payton Britt and wide receiver/cornerback Tre’ Buie are other players that McCollum expects to have a major impact this fall.

Other projected starters for Marion include athlete Saeqwan McCullough, wide receiver/free safety Antwan Woods and wide receiver/linebacker Dellieon MoodyTristan Perkins and Brandon Bass are other linemen while Ricky Genwright and Lavern Bell will each see time at H-back and linebacker.

Linebacker/offensive lineman Jaquan Curry is hopeful to return by conference play after tearing his ACL during wrestling season.

Marion will work on the little things over the summer and try to develop more chemistry as they go through workouts together.

“We want to get maximum participation from everybody.  Last year we had what we called the Breakfast Club, where they would meet Monday through Thursday at 6:45 am.  We’re looking to do something similar to that this summer.  We want to get the guys a little more football savvy and fundamentally sound,” McCollum said.

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