In his first season as head football coach at Orangeburg-Wilkinson, Kevin "Butch" Crosby found a few on-field leaders he could count on to be examples for the rest of the Bruins.
On Wednesday's national signing day, two of those team leaders signed national letters of intent to play college football beginning this fall.
"One of the things you always want to see within your program is student-athletes having the chance to go off and further their education, while enhancing their athletic ability through football," Crosby said. "We've got two young men signing today who have been an integral part of my first season here.
"Those guys have done a great job of building this program and starting things off where we wanted to get started under my leadership. I'm excited to see those guys get this opportunity. We still have a couple more who should have opportunities to sign scholarship offers after signing day today. But these two young men are phenomenal and they have taken care of what needed to be taken care of in the classroom and on the football field."
Senior offensive tackle/guard Ben Brockington (6-foot-2, 270 pounds) signed with The Citadel, while senior defensive end/guard Da'Shon Scott (6-foot-1, 285 pounds) signed with Limestone.
"The Citadel was at the top of my list all along, they were recruiting me the most," Brockington said. "Presbyterian and a few others were on my list, but The Citadel was my top pick.
"The football program is great and the school with the engineering program is great. That is just what I was looking for. They've told me that before I even graduate I will have a job, thanks to internships through summers at the school."
Bulldogs coaches have told Brockington that he will be playing somewhere on the offensive line, either at a tackle or a guard slot, which is where he played for the Bruins.
"They said I have a great chance to work my way up to be a two-deep starter early," Brockington said. "Through the years here at O-W, it was hard sometimes, especially through the coaching change and all.
"It's a whole new program, but we adjusted and things will be fine here. I always wanted to play football on the next level and see where it goes from there. I'll play anywhere they put me. My friends and family have been there for me through this whole process, along with everybody here at the school."
Scott was most impressed with the Limestone coaching staff, led by Saints head coach Brian Turk, a former Ben Lippen School and University of South Carolina assistant coach.
"The coaches are great and it's a great school; I'm looking forward to furthering my education there," Scott said. "My visit was great; we ate and visited the facilities and went bowling and played laser tag and just had fun.
"I have an opportunity to start, since they are looking for some D-linemen to fill some spots. I'm looking forward to putting in my work and getting a starting position. I'll play defensive tackle. I've been dreaming about this for a long time."
Scott made several visits to other programs for offers, but he was sold on Limestone once he made his on-campus visit.
"This is a great way to show that if you get your work done, work hard on the field and work hard in the weight room and work hard in the classroom, everything will fall into place," Scott said.
Crosby always tells his high school players that playing football won't always be an option, but that they should enjoy it while they can, while planning for the future.
"The ball is going to go flat at some point in your life," Crosby said. "You've got to have a plan for what you are going to do when it does go flat.
"Take advantage of having football help pay for college, take the stress off of mom and dad, but use the opportunity to better yourself to do what you want to do in life. Get ready for the real world. That's what it's all about, both in high school and college."