Rivals still wary of post-Coley JC
Some top Manning Cup coaches do not believe the departure of astute former Jamaica College (JC) Manning Cup coach, Miguel Coley, will make the five-time defending Manning Cup champions more vulnerable this season.
Coley left after five seasons and five Manning Cup titles, leaving the role to former assistant, Andrew Peart. But despite Coley's exit, Manning Cup coaches do not believe it will make wresting the title from the Old Hope Road-based school any easier.
"I don't think that it has open up the doors for other schools," Wolmer's coach Alex Thomas told STAR Sports. Andrew (Peart) is a youthful coach. He's very knowledgeable, knows what he is doing, and I have the utmost respect for him. Other schools just have to put the work in, put their foot forward and do what they have to do to win," he said.
"I am not sure what they (JC) have. But when we meet JC, then we will see what they have," he added.
Marcel Gayle, St George's College's assistant and head coach to Peart at UWI FC for the last five seasons, expects his former assistant to do a great job and maintain JC's high standard.
"I want to officially congratulate Andrew, he's a fantastic coach, a coach for the future. I have worked with him over six years and he can handle the Jamaica College job. We (StGC) are not where we want to be as yet in terms of beating JC, but when that time comes let's see how it goes. But beating JC will not be any easier," he surmised.
St Catherine High's Anthony Patrick thinks external and administrative factors will continue to give JC an edge, and that it will not be easy to toppling the five- time defending champions.
"JC will be JC. They have a broad base of past students and scouts. So anyone (coach) that goes there and takes charge will have great ammunition. Plus, they have a formidable young coach, so I expect him to give a good showing," he said.
Meanwhile, Peart was unconcerned with negative comments and doubts some might have of him taking over and maintaining the school's winning tradition.
"It is a great pleasure to be head coach of Jamaica College. I'm not looking at what others are saying, that's not important. What is important is we stay focused on preparing our team to try be at their best every game.
"It's not about what we have done before. Our concern is the endless possibilities and we have to be prepared to capitalise," he said.
He added that being part of the JC set-up before his new appointment will be important in how he goes about business.
"Now you are in a new role but you know who to turn to, you already have a relationship with administrators, management and all players, that makes it easier than to come in and experiment and find your way around.
"I am not concerned with how people look at Jamaica College. My focus is preparing the team and making them competitive every game. Once we have the right attitude, and mentality the sky's the limit." he said.