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Marion High School

McCollum trying to re-establish culture at Marion

By C.R. Cumbee

Staff Writer

Marion—When Quin McCollum took over as head football coach at Marion High in 2016, he knew he had some work to do.  While the results on the field haven’t been as great as he hoped, McCollum still feels confident with what he has building with the Swamp Foxes.

“We realized that it would take some time and be a transition,” McCollum said.  “The kids have worked really hard and done everything they could do as far as getting themselves prepared to play.

“At Keenan, it was establishing a culture and aligning a football culture with a basketball culture.  Here, it’s re-establishing a culture.  I’m trying to bring a new energy and get the (recreational) teams to the middle school all on the same page.  That has been met with a lot of optimism.  Everybody so far has been real open about it.”

Only one new face was added to the coaching staff this offseason.  Former Lake City standout and Kingstree assistant Randall State joins the fold to assist with the secondary and the wide outs.

“He’s real versatile.  In this area, coaches are at a premium.  If you can find a guy that has the experience he has, it should play to our benefit.  It’s not like he’s a rookie.  He’s been around some great programs so that should work in our favor,” McCollum said.

The two veteran assistants on his staff this year are offensive line coach Tim Perkins and Brian Hennessy, who works with wide receivers, defensive backs, and coordinates special teams.

Offensive coordinator Jason English, who also deals with quarterbacks and running backs, came to Marion with McCollum and is beginning his third season.

After coming on board last fall, four coaches are looking to take the next step in their respective second seasons with the Swamp Foxes.

George Connell (defensive line) is a full-time staff member while Matthew Caulder (wide receivers/defensive backs), Jeremy Oxendine (quarterbacks) and Demetrius Johnson (running backs) are volunteers.

“One thing we really worked hard to improve on this year was our coaching cohesiveness.  They all know what my expectations are and we want to translate that onto the players,” McCollum said.

McCollum would like to hire one more coach before the season, but if that doesn’t materialize, he will coordinate the defense and lead the linebackers.

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