LAURINBURG — The Fighting Scots released the 2014 official football roster Wednesday morning, and the first name listed should not come as a surprise.
Jaylend Ratliffe, along with his patented No. 2, stands atop the page as Richard Bailey and his staff finalized the varsity and junior varsity rosters over the weekend.
Although Ratliffe has not officially been ruled out for the season, it is expected that the star quarterback will not play as he recovers from a fractured skull that was the result of an ATV accident a little over two weeks ago.
Ratliffe has begun rehab as he slowly gains strength and continues to heal. He has made progress over the last week as he’s been able to get out of bed and walk almost 10 yards with assistance, according to a source.
By last Friday, Ratliffe was off of his ventilator and was able to speak in limited fashion.
Senior linebacker Tyquan Ingram, who usually wears No. 44, wore Ratliffe’s No. 2 during Scotland’s scrimmage game at Douglas Byrd Tuesday. The team only played a handful of snaps on offense and defense before inclement weather cut the event short. Nobody on the team will wear No. 2 once the regular season starts.
While Ratliffe continues to recover at Carolinas Medical Center in Charlotte, the Scotland County community has supported him with several fundraisers. A plate sale, the latest effort to raise money, will take place on Aug. 28 at First United Methodist Church, at the corner of Church and Main streets in Laurinburg.
Ray Herring, of Southernway Catering, has organized the sale, naming it “Cooking for Jaylend.” Lunch will be served from 11 a.m to 2 p.m. and dinner from 4-7 p.m. Plates are $7 each for either chicken or pork chops with two sides, drink and dessert. A plate with both chicken and pork can be purchased for $10.
“I’m heading it, but the community has really supported me,” Herring said, adding that almost all the food and materials have been donated. “I just wanted to do something to help. I can cook, and I know everybody likes to eat.”
Tickets are available downtown at Harley’s Tuxedo or the Gospel Music and Christian Bookstore; at Community Drugs or Holmes Insurance, at 1028 and 615 Atkinson Street, respectively; at Carrie & Co., at 898 U.S. 401 or Taylor Made Cuts, across from Scotland High School on Church Street.
Also, an account for Ratliffe and his family has been set up at State Employees Credit Union by Laurinburg Police and Scotland County Rescue Squad. The account is only accessible to Ratliffe’s mom, Sharon, and anyone can donate to the account through any SECU branch. An online fundraiser, at www.gofundme.com/cenyp0, reached $8,280 before eventually closing at the beginning of last week.
The Mid-South 4-A schools will join the Southeastern 4-A in taking donations for Jaylend Ratliffe at their first home games, an effort the conference announced last Thursday. Scotland travels to play Mid-South opponent South View for their opening game on Aug. 22.
Donald and Bobbie Lowe are selling “2 Strong” T-shirts in honor of Ratliffe. The shirts costs $20 and the family can be reached at 910-280-9930.