In 1986 Coach Russ Manney then Head Football Coach of Wellsboro High School was appointed to represent District IV as a director at the Pennsylvania Scholastic Football Coaches Association (PSFCA). During his time of the board he had the privilege to serve with the late Jack Young, Towanda HS and the late Ken Robbin, Loyalsock Twp HS both PSFCA Hall of Fame members and District IV football coaching legends.
In the early 90's he was assigned the responsibility of coordinating a state wide network of prospect camps located in five locations. Coach Manney was in charge of creating a computer program (developed by Rudy Radocaj – Lock Haven University Computer Programmer) that would record statistics on the same criteria collected at each camp. At that time Coach Manney recruited Coach Young, Coach Robbins, Mike Carson – Line Mountain HS, and Jim Bergen – Montoursville HS to develop a District 4 Prospect Camp to be held at the Wellsboro Area Football/Track facility. Although spirits were high, expectations were tentative. The goal of that camp was 50-75 athletes for success. The camps were held on the last Wednesday of May following the state track meet in order to attract all divisions of college recruits.
Throughout the state, the camps were very successful. The District IV camp exceeded the goal set as 78 athletes participated. For the next four years each camp grew numerically throughout the state, but competition from other major-sponsored camps, college camps, and tension between districts caused us to look closer at what changes were needed in order to stay competitive.
That year the founding members of the District IV combine decided unanimously to move the camp to a more central location in our district. Coach Bergen requested permission for the
Montoursville School District and Montoursville HS became our new home until 2015 when the school district began renovation on their district's complex. The years at Montoursville saw tremendous growth; the average number of athletes competing grew to 275 thanks to the cooperation of our district coaches, the participating school districts, and the great response from Division I, II and III college coaches.
Today, the District IV High School Combine is considered one the premier non-major sponsored combines in the state of Pennsylvania. The quality of athlete, the dedication of the coaches who volunteer their time recording stats, and the accuracy of information disseminated to local colleges truly help with promoting our local athletes. Under the leadership of Coach Justin Van Fleet – Loyalsock HS, current president of the District IV coaches association, the last two camps have seen over 300 athletes participate in the combine each year.
For information concerning this year's combine, contact the head football coach of your local high school or Combine Director, Russ Manney at (570) 724-7039.