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Q&A with Philip Simmons 7th and 8th grade B team football

Q&A with Philip Simmons 7th and 8th grade B team football
Credit: Longneck Photography

Amy Hill - BVM Sports User Submission

CHARLESTON, S.C. — A Q&A with Eric Bendig who is the Head Football Coach for the Philip Simmons Football Program.

Credit: Longneck Photography

Who Coaches the Iron Horses B Team/7th & 8th Grade Team?

Eric Bendig: Head Coach Bryan Williams, Assistant Coaches Matt Goddard, Casey Kellermann, Todd Chastain.

Is there a history or backstory on the team/club/program you would like to share?

Bendig: We have unbelievable interest from our two middle schools, Philip Simmons Middle and Daniel Island School, and we decided to allow for our 7th and 8th grade students to be a part of this program by adding the B Team program to our JV and Varsity. 2022 was our first year playing as a B Team program and we were more successful than I ever thought we could be, and that is attributed to our coaches and players.

Credit: Longneck Photography

What are the team’s goals for the current/upcoming season?

Bendig: We want to continue to grow our B Team program into one of the best in the Lowcountry and provide our high school football teams a feeder program that produces championship level players on and off the field, year in and year out.

Credit: Longneck Photography

Who are the team’s captains or leaders? What makes them a vital part of the team’s success?

Bendig: We had multiple captains for the season but three that stood out were Jordan Johnson, Hayes Goddard, Ashton Kellermann, and Cooper Webb. Those players, as well as all of our players, work extremely hard and make others around them better. They have bought into the Iron Horse Culture we have laid as our foundation.

Does the team have any pregame rituals or traditions?

Bendig: We are so new and young that we are trying to forge that legacy of tradition and ritual. We love to remind our guys and really reiterate that this is a FAMILY and we want to always work hard for the family.

Credit: Longneck Photography

How does the team welcome new members?

Bendig: Anyone that wants to be a part of our program is welcome. As long as you put in the work and the effort, we value any and all abilities in our program. Everyone has value. Everyone can play a role and a part in this program.

How does the team celebrate?

Bendig: We like to celebrate by gathering up together and reminding our guys to enjoy and have fun with this process. We work so hard for wins. Let’s enjoy them. Playing music in the locker room, a little dancing and singing, and we enjoy our time together in victory.

Has the team (or any individuals) broken any records this year?

Bendig: It was their first ever year of existence and went 9-1 on the season. That will be tough to break for any of our future teams coming up.

What has motivated the team to reach their goals this season?

Bendig: They are motivated to work hard, give great effort, and be a good teammate for our Iron Horse Football program. I told all of them that the goal here is to have them want to keep playing football every year because of the love we helped instill. I think the love they share for each other and this program keeps driving them.

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