WHS Football prepares for first jamboree

Football coach Jess Rutledge coaches during tackling drills. The Chargers open the season September 7 at Christ Prep Academy. Photo by Emma Frey.

Instead of a traditional scrimmage, WHS football will participate in its first ever Football Jamboree Friday night in Lyndon.

The 2019 season will be the first year ever that a jamboree will be allowed in Kansas. WHS will compete against the Lyndon Tigers and the St. Mary’s Bears in game sessions that should last around 30 minutes each.

A jamboree is when three or four teams play each other following specific rules. Each team in the jamboree is allowed 36 plays, and in-between each game session there is a required 5 minute break.

According to athletic director Jeron Weisshaar, the Jamboree benefits the team in numerous ways. “It will give us the chance to test varsity against varsity, rather than sticking within our school and doing freshman vs. seniors. You have to think about those years when we only had 15 kids going out for football, you couldn’t even scrimmage 11 vs. 11.”

Head coach Rutledge is also excited for the format. “This will give me the chance to finalize starters. Hopefully, we’ll find out what we need to work on before the official season.”

The players are excited for the new format as well. “It gives us a chance to play against other teams. I want to find out who’s got it and who doesn’t,” junior Adam Miller said.

A football jamboree was one of many rules that the Kansas State High School Activities Association revised for football. One rule change was going from a 25-second play clock to a 40-second play clock. Tripping a runner is now a foul, and grabbing the name-plate on the back of the jersey to pull someone down is an illegal personal contact foul. These changes were made by the National Federation of State High School Associations “in an effort to reduce the risk of injury in high school football.”

The football jamboree starts at 7 p.m. Friday in Lyndon. The current plan is for Lyndon, St. Marys and WHS to take turns hosting.

Mayah Mumpower, Lauren Schutter, @whscharger

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