Free passes have been taken away by the TSSAA for Hall of Champions losses.
Previously the organization stated these basketball games did not have to count on the team’s regular season record. However, the TSSAA now says the games should be included in a team’s win-loss record.
“Schools are permitted to play these games as an exception to the number of regular season contests they are allowed to play in a season,” said TSSAA assistant executive director Matthew Gillespie. “This is two more than what they’re permitted. If you are asking for an exception to the regular season limit, then why would they not count as regular season contests?
“Our stance is they should count, even though our bylaws don’t speak to what schools count on their records.”
So basically Hall of Champions games count, win or lose. Therefore, the honest account of a team’s record will include all Hall of Champions contests.
n Greeneville’s football program earned more statewide recognition Monday when Terrell Rollins received the Class AA Mr. Football lineman award.
Rollins, the Greene Devils’ standout defensive tackle, was a finalist along with his teammate Jamel Hall and Austin-East’s Jarod Henderson.
West Greene running back Dalton Boles was a finalist for the Class AA Mr. Football Back, but Christian Academy of Knoxville quarterback Charlie High received the honor.
The winners were announced during a ceremony Monday in Murfreesboro.
n At least one thing became clear in last week’s Hardee’s Classic basketball tournament: Sullivan East and Unicoi County should have a pair of hotly contested Three Rivers Conference battles on Dec. 9 in Bluff City and Jan. 20 in Erwin.
East defeated the Blue Devils 66-61 in Saturday’s title game in Jonesborough.
If those two teams will go after each other the way they did in a non-conference game, imagine the intensity for a league contest.
The Blue Devils have an edge in the post right now while East has the edge on the perimeter. Whichever team closes the gap the most should win the rematch.
But those are just two of the Three Rivers’ top four teams. Elizabethton and Sullivan North have played just one game between them so far. It should be quite a conference race this year.
n Because of Greeneville’s participation in the Class 4A state football championship, Saturday’s basketball game against Science Hill has been postponed.
It will be made up Jan. 7 at Greeneville with boys and girls’ contests.
n This year’s state football championship games feature several coaches who are off to impressive starts at their current schools. Here’s a look at the top coaching records for Friday and Saturday’s games in Cookeville:
Coach, team W-L Pct.
George Quarles, Maryville 178-13 .932
Caine Ballard, Greeneville 39-5 .886
Ricky Bowers, Ensworth 58-12 .829
Arcentae Broome, Maplewood 23-5 .821
Rusty Bradley, CAK 49-14 .778
n Here’s a look at who is favored and by how much in this week’s state championship football games.
Class 6A — Maryville by 7 over Memphis Whitehaven.
Class 5A — Knox Powell by 3 over Henry County.
Class 4A — Greeneville by 6 Nashville Maplewood.
Class 3A — Christian Academy of Knoxville by 7 over Milan.
Class 2A — Friendship Christian by 10 over Dresden.
Class 1A — South Pittsburg by 3 over Wayne County.
n Boys basketball games of the week — (Today) Tennessee High at Daniel Boone, Sullivan South at Sullivan North, (Friday) Science Hill at Sullivan South, Unicoi County at Daniel Boone, Dobyns-Bennett at David Crockett, Sullivan East at Tennessee High, Elizabethton at Hampton (Saturday) Tennessee High at Unicoi County.
The early season schedule has been a difficult chore for Unicoi County, and it doesn’t get any easier this weekend with games against two tough Big Eight Conference opponents.
n Boys pick of the week — Dobyns-Bennett 60, David Crockett 57.
The Pioneers have been up and down this season while the Indians have a lot to prove. It should be a tight battle, but overall athleticism should carry D-B.
n Sullivan East stands as a solid No. 2 in this week’s Prep Top 10.
Team W-L Prv
1. Science Hill 5-0 1
2. Sullivan East 6-0 3
3. Unicoi County 4-1 2
4. Tennessee High 5-1 4
5. Dobyns-Bennett 1-1 5
6. Sullivan North 0-0 6
7. Elizabethton 0-1 7
8. David Crockett 3-3 9
9. Unaka 2-3 nr
10. Sullivan South 2-3 nr
n Girls basketball games of the week — (Today) Tennessee High at Daniel Boone, (Friday) Science Hill at Sullivan South, Unicoi County at Daniel Boone, Elizabethton at Hampton, (Saturday) Tennessee High at Unicoi County.
Daniel Boone has a chance to set its season on a solid course this week, but the competition is stout. The Lady Vikings are expected to challenge for the Big Eight title this season while the Lady Blue Devils are the favorite in the Three Rivers Conference.
n Girls pick of the week — Science Hill 72, Sullivan South 54.
The Lady Rebels are off to a good start, but the Hilltoppers have weapons that few teams in the state possess.
n After the top three spots, there’s a scramble in this week’s girls rankings. Any of the next six teams are fiercely in the hunt for a top-five position.
Team W-L Prv
1. Science Hill 4-0 1
2. Tennessee High 4-0 2
3. Unicoi County 4-1 4
4. Daniel Boone 2-1 3
5. Cloudland 4-1 5
6. Greeneville 3-2 nr
7. North Greene 5-2 6
8. South Greene 2-1 nr
9. Elizabethton 2-4 7
10. Dobyns-Bennett 2-1 9
(tie) Sullivan South 4-1 nr