Ft Dorchester turns their football program around in 2013 - WCBD-TV: News, Weather, and Sports for Charleston, SC

Ft Dorchester turns their football program around in 2013

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Coach Steve Laprad strolls the sidelines during game time. Coach Steve Laprad strolls the sidelines during game time.

The Fort Dorchester Patriots are 2-0 to start the 2013 season, after a disappointing 2012 campaign. In 2012, the Patriots finished 5-6, and Coach Steve Laprad promised that wouldn't happen again.

Never one to mince words, Coach Laprad says, " We've been upset with how the last two or three years went. I tell them it's like we worked all week but didn't get our full paycheck."

Changes have been made to correct the problems, and one of the most notable changes has to be the size of the squad. For a 4a school, there are a whole lot less bodies on the sidelines. "That was by choice. Obviously this year we could do the same thing, we could carry 80-90 kids and we have in the past. But I always interview our kids, the returning kids at the end of the year, and that was the number one thing everyone said is that a lot of the guys know they are not going to get in the ball game unless we are up by 30 or down by 30, so they really don't take it seriously. So we've cut down on that."

"I think it has added to the closeness of the team, the focus of the team, and it is obviously easier to coach a smaller number, so we'll see how it works."

Coach Laprad has some help keeping his players in line this year, as Tracy White joins the coaching staff. White is a 10 year NFL veteran and a Lowcountry native. Going straight from the New England Patriots, to the Ft Dorchester Patriots, Coach Laprad considers the addition a plus. "I mean shoot, imagine being in high school and a guy who played for the New England Patriots this time last year is here."

"He is such a great guy, he is easy, and not a loud vocal guy, but he is always talking to the kids and messing around with them. Obviously they respect him, and so do we." Coach Laprad jokes, "It's nice to ask him some questions, like what Bill Belichick did in this situation, so he has helped me quite a bit too."

With a veteran coach at the helm, White adding to the ranks and a veritable stable of key players, the Patriots are poised to make some noise in 2013.

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