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Fridays football jamboree returns to an eight-team event
Louis Wyant.JPG
NORTH CENTRAL QUARTERBACK Hunter Wyant listens to head coach Louis Clyburn during a game from last season. The Knights meet Buford in Fridays 39th annual Camden Shrine Club Football Jamboree. - photo by C-I photo by Tom Didato

With so many schools opting to play a week zero game, it has led to jamborees having to be moved around and coaches looking for places to bring their teams in order to get a game-like experience for their players before they take to the field for the season openers.
Given that set of circumstances, the 39th annual Camden Shrine Club Football Jamboree has added one more mini-game and three new teams heading into the event to be held on Friday, Aug. 15 at Zemp Stadium in Camden at 6:30 p.m.
In one respect, having eight teams is a return to several years earlier when the jamboree had four mini--- two 12-minute quarters each --- games.
Tickets will be on sale at the gates on Friday for $6 each. Proceeds from the evening’s festivities benefit the many charitable endeavors of the Camden Shrine Club.
The night will kick off at 6:30 p.m. with Lee Central taking on Andrew Jackson in the first of the four two-quarter contests.  Lee Central is coming off a 5-6 campaign which included a trip to the class AA playoffs for Baron Turner’s Stallions. The Volunteers finished with a break-even 6-6 mark in 2013 with David Moore and company advancing to the second round of the AA state playoffs for the second straight season. Senior quarterback Kolby Whitley, a dual threat, returns under center after piling up 3,000 yards and accounting for 35 touchdowns in 2013.
The evening’s opener will be followed by North Central tangling with Region 4-AA colleague Buford in what has become a staple of the pre-season event. North Central went 3-8 last season with Louis Clyburn and company getting tripped up by Chesterfield in the first round of the AA state playoffs. Buford is led by first-year head coach Tripp Watts, who hopes to revamp the Yellow Jackets’ fortunes following a an 0-11 2013 campaign in which three wins were vacated due to the use of an ineligible player.
The third game will pit Lugoff-Elgin against pre-season Region 4-AAA favorite A.C. Flora. L-E will be led by interim coach Dave Thomas, who was promoted to the post following the retirement of Scott Jones in July. The young Demons will look to right the ship following a 1-10 2013 season. A.C. Flora is the pre-season favorite in Region 4-AAA and is ranked fifth in the state’s AAA ranks by Friday Night Football magazine which has Falcon defensive backs Denzel Johnson and Rion Davis on its pre-season top 50 players in the Palmetto State and on its pre-season AAA All-State squad.
The nightcap will have Camden squaring off against Region 4-4A foe Ridge View. Jimmy Neal’s host Bulldogs shed consecutive two-win seasons last fall by finishing with a .500 record as they hope to make a return to the state AAA playoffs this November. Ridge View and head coach Raymond Jennings hope to turn things around in 2014 after a 3-8 campaign of a year ago in which the Blazers won one conference contest.
In the event of inclement weather on Friday night, the Camden Shrine Club Football Jamboree will be pushed back until Saturday, Aug. 16 with the first of the four mini-games kicking off at 6:30 p.m.