August 30th, 2019 will go down in memory for many sports fans around the area and could be talking about it for generations to come for their beloved team.
No, we’re not talking about the sale of the professional baseball team in Kansas City a new owner.
Kansas High School football programs for the first time in state history had the choice to continue the traditional intra-squad “soap/pop/can/sports drink” scrimmage or part-take in a “Jamboree”.
A jamboree, as cited by the Kansas High School Activities Association, “consists of three or four member school teams. Two teams are not permitted. In addition, five or more schools are not permitted.”
Other conditions were laid out such as schools being limited to participating in only one preseason jamboree, participation is optional, no kicking or special team plays are permitted, and it will be officiated by registered KSHSAA football referees.
Teams were limited to thirty-six total offensive plays for the entire jamboree. Meaning if there were four total teams then one team could only run 12 plays against each of the three other schools participating.
After the first-ever jamboree took place around the state, many coaches were happy with their experience.
“The jamboree was a great thing for us. We gained solid film and an opportunity to get a solid evaluation on our kids,” said Galena High School football coach Beau Sarwinski.
Iola High School football head coach David Daugharty echoed those excitements.
“As a smaller school, it was a great way to put comparable competition out there. In years past, we would mix varsity and JV players at our scrimmage. We wouldn’t get a good look at what we could do as a varsity or JV unit, and at least 1 JV player usually would get injured.”
Prairie View football coach Kyle Littrell was happy to see Kansas embrace the Jamboree.
“Kansas is about 20-25 years behind Missouri as they have been doing it for a while, I just don’t understand why it took so long.”
First-year Chanute football head coach Clete Frazell saw it as an added motivation for his players.
“The second week of the season is typically the toughest week to keep players motivated and focused. I think the jamboree gives them something to look forward to and keeps the motivation going in the second week of practice.”
Santa Fe Trail head coach Jayson Duncan felt that it benefited his team, regardless of class.
“It was fun for all involved, from freshman to seniors. It gave us an opportunity to see where we are at with kids on the same level.
Team’s social media were active at the conclusion of Friday night’s event to share their thoughts on the state’s inaugural high school football jamboree.
Tonight’s jamboree was a success! Kids played hard and worked together well. Proud of the team, coaches, managers, and our parents and fans! So glad @KSHSAA decided to do this! It was a great experience for everyone involved!
— Eureka Football (@FootballEureka) August 31, 2019
— Santa Fe Trail HS (@sfthscharger) August 31, 2019
— Comet Athletics (@CometAthletics) August 30, 2019
— kyle groff (@CoachGroff77) August 31, 2019
It even appeared as though fans were in on the action in some parts of the region.
Great crowd at the Eureka, Erie, Yates Center, Neodesha Jamboree! pic.twitter.com/2Q5TaGjRpS
— Eureka USD 389 (@EurekaTornadoes) August 31, 2019
— Pittsburg Dragons Activities (@DragonActivity) August 31, 2019
However, even with all the excitement and giddiness of playing in a jamboree, or even a scrimmage, teams will now shift their focus to the horizon of the kickoff of the 2019 season.