Though he is officially listed as the interim head football coach at Summerville High School for the 2015 season, Joe Call has hit the ground running with every intention of earning the full-time tag next spring.
Call, 36, becomes the school’s second head coach in 64 years, replacing the legendary John McKissick, who retired after 63 seasons and 621 career victories. Call is McKissick’s grandson and also was the team’s offensive coordinator for the last nine years.
Call says he feels no pressure externally to excel this season.
“I don’t think about (the interim tag),” said Call recently. “I am going to push my vision for this program for this season. I feel like I have the support of our administration and our superintendent. I don’t feel any pressure really. If I had a fear of looking over my shoulder, I would not have taken the challenge. I know we can do great things.”
Heading into his third full week as the head coach, Call has been non-stop during the month of July as he prepares his team for the start of preseason practice on July 31. The coach first met with every member of the coaching staff, individually, and began pushing an “As One” philosophy.
“We don’t need to change much here, but there are things we can do to make it better for our kids,” said Call. “I am really pushing accountability with our coaches and players. We are defining and understanding everyone’s role in this program. Every person affiliated with this program has a purpose and it’s going to take every member of the program rowing the boat in the same direction. That includes the coaching staff, the players, the training staff and the fans. It’s going to take all of us together.”
Call says he will relinquish his offensive play-calling duties, yielding the process to offensive line coach Jody Kafina. He will turn his focus to the total program and has worked to become familiar with all aspects of the team. Keeping busy has not allowed for Call to think of the emotions that may come with his first official game as the replacement for a legend.
“I’m so focused right now on practice schedules and preparing for the start of practice that I really haven’t thought about that first game,” said Call. “Maybe on the day of that first game it will hit me some. But for now, our focus is day one.”
Cathedral Academy athletic director Brian Price has announced the hiring of Robert Henneman as the school’s new head football coach.
Henneman, who has coached soccer and basketball at the school, becomes the school’s third head coach in its 16-year history. Henneman is a former semi-pro coach, serving as the head coach of the Carolina Hurricanes from 1993-97.
“The number one thing that stood out to me about Rob was his passion for the game of football and his passion to instill the fundamentals of the game into our young men,” said Price in a prepared release.
Cathedral competes on the SCISA eight-man level and is coming off a playoff season in 2014 under former coach Rick Howell.
“My passion is football, and the challenges of bringing a team of young men together and creating a winning atmosphere is a great feeling,” Henneman said. “It feels great being given this opportunity to work with these young men and represent Cathedral Academy.”
Rising senior Hunter Grover of Ashley Ridge verbally committed to play baseball at Presbyterian College last week. Grover, who plays outfield at Ashley Ridge but was recruited as an infielder, batted .397 with two home runs and 16 RBIs in 2015 for Ashley Ridge. He earned all-Region 8-AAAA and AAAA all-state honors.
Grover will sign his letter-of-intent during the November early signing period. Grover is listed as the fourth-rated shortstop in South Carolina in the 2016 graduating class by Diamond Prospects.