Excitement buzzing around St. Martin football

jkjones@sunherald.com Twitter:@_jkjonesJuly 11, 2014 

ST. MARTIN -- No Coast football team has enjoyed a better off-season than St. Martin.

The Yellow Jackets recently won the Harrison Central 7-on-7 tournament, edging out nine teams. St. Martin compiled a 23-3 record in 7-on-7 competition this summer.

Quarterback Wayne Overman ended the Harrison Central tournament with 16 TD passes, while quarterback Tyler Polk added three. Jacorey Williams had six TD receptions, Polk added five and Neicill McNair scored three.

St. Martin coach Eddie Wayne Whitehead, however, is taking a cautious approach to the Yellow Jackets' 7-on-7 success.

"The kids have been working hard, but we still have work to do," Whitehead said. "Anytime you're competing, you always want to win. We've got athletes, but we don't have depth."

St. Martin (7-5) is coming off its first winning season since the Yellow Jackets finished second in Region 4-5A in 2003 under coach Jon Wilson.

The returnees for St. Martin include Polk and linebacker Jamal Lydie, two Sun Herald's All-South Mississippi performers. The Yellow Jackets will count heavily on both this season.

Polk, who has a scholarship offer from Southern Miss, is considered one of the Coast's top skilled players. The junior should receive more Football Bowl Subdivision offers during the season.

"Tyler is a dynamic playmaker at quarterback, running back and wide receiver with the ball in his hands," Whitehead said. "He's a great defensive player, but we couldn't afford to play him on defense."

Whitehead is impressed with the prowess of Lydie, who has an offer from Alabama A&M.

"Lydie has a knack for seeing the ball," Whitehead said. "He's explosive going to ball and is a good student."

This coming week is the MHSAA-mandated dead week, then teams resume conditioning until fall practice opens Aug. 4.

St. Martin opens its season against Columbia on Aug. 22.

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