Both the Scott's Branch middle and high school football programs received a big surprise last week when they found out they were chosen as one of the winners of Riddell's '18 in 18' Smarter Football program.
Scott's Branch was provided with …
This item is available in full to subscribers
Click here to log in
If you're a print subscriber, but do not yet have an online account, click here to create one.
If you aren't yet a subscriber,
click here to start a new subscription.
You also have the option of purchasing 24 hours of website access, for just 99 cents. *
Click here to continue.
* Full access is available from time of purchase through 11:59pm the following day
Scott's Branch was provided with roughly $10,000 of new football equipment.
"It's a great honor," Scott's Branch High head coach and athletic director Brian Smith said. "Only 18 schools in the nation were chosen and only two were in South Carolina, the other being Spring Valley in Columbia."
Scott's Branch was also presented with a special video of Riddell brand ambassador and 2-time Super Bowl champion Peyton Manning congratulating the school for being selected.
"Working with USA Football and using the latest in training techniques is essential to growing the game, and we're happy to have schools like yours doing your part," Manning said in the special message. "We're excited for your program and can't wait for you to continue the 2018 season with some new gear."
Along with the YouTube message, Scott's Branch was provided with a football autographed by Manning.
"Peyton Manning lends in a lot of credibility," Smith said. "It motivates our players to see that someone cares.
"For the next 10 years, we'll have the best equipment in the country," Smith said. "It's tough to keep the expensive sport of football going. Without organizations like this, football goes away in a lot of these communities."
Riddell's annual program received nearly 1,400 applications this year. They chose 18 programs across the country that have demonstrated their commitment to a smarter, safer game.
I'd like to thank Riddell, the Smarter Football initiative and Peyton Manning," Smith said. "It says a lot about them to help the game of football."
One of the reasons why Scott's Branch was chosen was because the entire on-field staff of the middle school team is USA Football Heads Up certified and committed to teaching its players proper tackling and blocking techniques, according to Lou Petrella from Riddell. The team also offers a nutritional program for its athletes, including post-game and post-workout meals.
More Articles to Read