Daurice Simpson, a York Comprehensive High School football stalwart, has been tapped to play in the Dec. 20 Shrine Bowl of the Carolinas.
The annual high school football classic will be at Wofford College’s Gibbs Stadium in Spartanburg. Simpson joins Northwestern’s Dupree Hart and Chris Bouyer as members of the South Carolina team.
The gifted YCHS senior has occupied a cornerback position this season on the defensive side of the ball. He is also a threat at wide receiver, with an explosive burst after catches and speed in the return game.
“We wish others on our team could’ve been considered for the Shrine Bowl, but we are proud of Daurice,” said Bobby Carroll, Cougar’s head football coach.
“He is a talented football player and very deserving of Shrine Bowl recognition,” said Carroll, adding that Simpson will be used at cornerback as a return specialist for the Sandlappers.
“Daurice will represent his school and community well,” Carroll said. “I can assure you his top priority now is to help the Cougars win football games.”
Asked about a hamstring injury that has limited Simpson to defense, Carroll said the YCHS mainstay is OK.
“Daurice is ready to go,” Carroll said. “His explosiveness and speed make him a difference-maker. He makes us a better team.”
Simpson was humbled by the attention after a recent practice at the YCHS stadium.
“I was hoping I’d make the Shrine Bowl or the North-South game,” he said. “I am very excited. It is a great opportunity, and I will give them my best.”
Added Simpson: “I know there will be college scouts from around the country at the Shrine Bowl practices.”
While Simpson is elated about his Shrine Bowl selection, his primary focus remains with the YCHS football team.
“My top priority now is to help the Cougars win the state championship,” said Simpson. “My coaches and teammates are happy for me, and that makes me feel good.”
Simpson impacted the Cougar varsity team as a ninth-grader. “I started at cornerback in a playoff game and helped the return team,” he said.
He played youth football in his formative years at the York Parks and Recreation Department.
The head coach for the South Carolina Shrine Bowl team is Pelion’s Ben Freeman. Mooresville’s Hal Capps is head coach of the North Carolina Shrine team.
The last Cougar football player to compete in the Shrine Bowl was Lee Wright in 2012.