Time of changes brought many stories with it

jarrett.justin@gmail.comNovember 27, 2011 

A story is only as good as its subject, a storyteller only as good as his audience.

I don't know if anyone has ever said that before, but they should have.

Over the past six-plus years, I've had the pleasure of writing somewhere north of 1,600 bylined stories for The Island Packet and The Beaufort Gazette, and the subjects have rarely been dull, the audience always top-notch.

This is my final column as sports editor and while the subject is sort of ho-hum, the audience is as great as ever.

And that's why I'm writing this column. Frankly, I'm not such an important cog that my departure requires a farewell column, but you've been such a great audience that you deserve a proper goodbye.

Well, it's not really "goodbye" so much as "see you around."

I begin a new job Monday as sports information director and director of marketing for USC Beaufort athletics, so you'll still bump into me at the ballpark, the grocery store and of course the Heritage -- you didn't think I would miss THAT, did you?

A lot has changed since I started working here in July 2005.

Then, Bluffton High School's football team was preparing for its second season and seeking its first win. Now, the Bobcats are one win away from an undefeated season and a state championship.

Then, Hilton Head Prep's girls basketball team was in the midst of a dynastic run under coach Bob Sulek. Now, the Dolphins are facing a major rebuilding project under new coach Tara (McKnight) Dakolios, one of Sulek's former stars.

Then, a Hilton Head Island private school had not won a SCISAA football state championship since 1997. Now, Hilton Head Christian and Hilton Head Prep have combined to win five in the past seven years.

Then, USCB didn't have any athletics teams. Now, the Sand Sharks have nine varsity sports and have become a national championship contender in men's and women's golf.

Then, the Verizon Heritage had one of the longest-running sponsors in professional golf. Now, Verizon is gone, but after a heck of a scare, the RBC Heritage is alive and well.

So many changes, and I'm glad to have shared their stories with you.

I thank the subjects who shared a glimpse into their lives, and I thank you for taking a moment to read about them.

See you around.

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