Oscar Smith football will “fight” for Bill Dee

CHESAPEAKE (WAVY)- It’s been a tough offseason, to say the least, for the Oscar Smith High School football family.

On the football side, the Tigers fell short by one yard in double-overtime to Westfield in last season’s 6A state championship game. It was the second straight season Oscar Smith had fallen to Westfield in the title game.

A few months later, head coach Bill Dee passed away after a bout with cancer.

Star defensive back Cam’Ron Kelly remembers when coach Dee had to withstand chemotherapy, but still managed to be present at practices. “He still came out here because he wanted to see how we were doing,” said Kelly, who will also play quarterback this season.

“He’s a fighter. So, my whole team has to be a fighter like him.”

To lead the charge into 2017, Scott Johnson was promoted from assistant coach to head man. He has 38 years of coaching experience, including a five-year run as head coach at Western Branch High School. “He’s a great coach, and he touched thousands and thousands of lives,” Scott said of Dee, who won five state championships at Phoebus High School.

Despite the hardship of loss, coach Johnson’s team intends to power on. “We want to get back to the state game,” said Johnson.