published Friday, October 21st, 2011

Signal Mountain’s appeal denied by TSSAA

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    Signal Mountain High School football field.
    Photo by Dan Henry.
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Do you agree with the TSAA decision on Signal Mountain's appeal?

The Tennessee Secondary School Athletic Association’s Board of Control voted Friday morning to deny Signal Mountain High School’s appeal of an earlier ruling that forced the football team to vacate six wins.

The majority decision verdict upheld the TSSAA’s Oct. 7 ruling that Eagles senior linebacker and running back Tim McClendon was ineligible. It was determined by a TSSAA investigation that Signal Mountain did not properly fill out the paper work to allow McClendon to be eligible. McClendon, who transferred from Lakeview-Fort Oglethorpe, does not live in Signal Mountain’s school zone.

Signal Mountain’s appeal lasted nearly three hours Thursday, led by attorney Clancy Covert who interviewed McClendon, McClendon’s mother, Signal head coach Bill Price, athletic director Patty Lane, Hamilton County school board member Chip Baker and assistant coach Shane Roberson — who has been McClendon’s mentor since middle school. Principal Dr. Tom McCullough also spoke on behalf of the school.

The board then held a closed-door meeting to discuss the issue for nearly five hours before deciding to delay its vote until Friday morning.

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about Stephen Hargis...

Stephen has covered local sports in the tri-state area for more than 24 years, having been with the Times Free Press since its inception, and has been an assistant sports editor since 2005. Stephen is among the most decorated writers in the TFP’s newsroom, winning numerous state, regional and national writing awards, including seven in 2013 and a combined 12 in the last two years. He was named one of the top 10 sports writers ...

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MemphisGuy25 said...

HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA. This couldn't of happened to a better group of people! This is awesome! Congrats to TSSAA

October 21, 2011 at 12:17 p.m.
AlmostAmanda said...

Gloating like that puts you on the same level as those who think any criticism of Signal Mountain is nothing but "envy" and "jealousy." It's tasteless and immature.

The fact is that there are some wonderful people on Signal Mountain - including kids who worked hard and played by the rules. I'm not sure what the alternative could have been, but while I think Signal Mountain's administration and coaching staff should have to face consequences for their actions, I wish something else could have been done to prevent those kids from being punished for things that were out of their control. My sympathies to those who did what they were supposed to and are negatively impacted by this decision.

October 21, 2011 at 12:24 p.m.
onetinsoldier said...

Recruiting at the High School level has to be stopped. This decision was correct and SMHS should be ashamed for appealing at all. They not only teach ANYTHING TO WIN but they teach how to whine when caught. Ranked high in everything but morals.

October 21, 2011 at 12:24 p.m.
laxdad said...

Next Coach Price should play him every game if the team wants to. Go 0-10 and give the TSSAA the you know what

October 21, 2011 at 12:36 p.m.
fball2011fan said...

Really mature memphisguy25... hope this happens to your kids one day and then you will realize how bad it sucks when people laugh at you!! Get em next year SM

October 21, 2011 at 12:37 p.m.
MemphisGuy25 said...

fball2011fan...this will not happen to me or my kids because I will follow the rules and try to cheat the system!

October 21, 2011 at 12:43 p.m.
duckman said...

I love how people keep using the work "Recruting" The kid has never played a down of high school football in Tennessee and played 2 quarters at LFO. People just cant stand it that Signal is so good at all sports. I guess the Girls golf team is in violation too. I hope Price will play #3 next week against Sequatchie and leave the first string in for all four quarters and shoot for 100 points.

October 21, 2011 at 12:47 p.m.
MemphisGuy25 said...

fball2011fan...this will not happen to me or my kids because I will follow the rules and NOT try to cheat the system!

October 21, 2011 at 1:02 p.m.
LSUTiger said...

I was sorry to see they lost the appeal even though I am a so called 'hater'. I would have enjoyed watching them beat the crap out of teams from other parts of the state in the playoffs. The most arrogant group of people in the appeal hearing was the TSSAA. I do have a question. How are teams like CAK. Boyd, Notre Dame , Lipscomb and others allowed to compete in division one with public schools? I understand the multiplier and the ability to give athletic scholarships as a determining factor between schools being division 1and 2. What I don't understand is does all of Boyd's players live in Boyd's territory? If not, should they not be ineligible as well? Nothing against Boyd, just an example as they are local.

October 21, 2011 at 1:24 p.m.
ChattaVol06 said...

Even though Tim McClendon has been ruled ineligbible, he will probably play against Sequatchee County next Friday night. Since SMHS cannot make the playoffs and another win being vacated doesn't matter, I hope that they let Tim play in his final high school game and that Signal whoops Sequatchee 100-0!! Should be a pretty intense game anyhow since most people think that the Sequatchee Principal is the one who brought this to the TSSAA's attention.

October 21, 2011 at 1:25 p.m.
momjanrn said...

Memphisguy... you obviously don't know the whole story and are just jealous of the success of our school. Do you honestly think the coaches thought they could get away with playing such a talented player without being noticed ??? They would never have jeopardized the season of the rest of the team. It isn't like Tim is a quiet, unnoticed lineman ! People like you just want to shoot down anyone who succeeds. Why deny this young man a chance at a good education, in a safe environment where he can thrive ? If attending and playing for SMHS would have gotten him a scholarship to continue his education, why are you against that ? Your comments are a sad testimony to the type person (holier than thou) that you are.

October 21, 2011 at 1:26 p.m.
ChattVegas said...

Not a shocker - the fix was in. Certain people connected to the TSSAA were looking for anything they could to get at Bill Price. Tim McClendon just happened to be the vehicle to deliver the blow. As an earlier article stated - several Signal Mountain players were investigated - and the only error that was found in the investigation was related to one of Tim McClendon's forms – even though his correct address was on the form. Let’s be real HONEST – this was not about FAIR PLAY or ILLEGAL RECRUITING. This was never mentioned by TSSAA from what I can tell. This was about finding a way to get back at Coach Price and the Signal Mountain HS team for opening a serious and relentless can of whooop – and rubbing several small minded coaches, principles and parents the wrong way.
Note that TSSAA NEVER accused SMHS of illegal recruiting - it was about a form filled out incorrectly - yet the players actual living address was correct on the form.
As bitter as this may be for the folks up on Signal Mountain - the sun will come up tomorrow - and life goes on.

October 21, 2011 at 1:34 p.m.
madmomma said...

ChattaVol06 its spelled Sequatchie.... You really need to spell check. Whoever brought the TSSAA in did it to prevent coaches and players from doing this in the future. I feel bad for the kid but I know alot of kids that would LOVE to go to SMMHS but can't BECAUSE THEY DON'T LIVE THERE! Kids that live on Signal Mountain but on the Sequatchie County side have to go to school in Sequatchie County so why should an all star football player that lives even further away get to go there? They need to re-group and think about next year and stop trying to blame their mistakes on people that they think turned them in.

October 21, 2011 at 1:42 p.m.

The comments over the past few weeks show the attitude and negativity towards Signal. I am not convinced it is only Jealousy but rather IGNORANCE and perhaps the result of a poor education. Note they have had to correct their posts becuase they said it wrongly. What I do know, in my opinion, is the punishment does not fit the crime. And Signal will be back next year and just as strong as ever. In the meantime look out Sequatchie. One thing with th TSSAA decision is that obvioulsy they had problems with making it. They had a 5 hour closed door session and still could not have a majority ruling. They had to delay the vote until today. Now that should leave some to wonder at what may have transpired in the overnight hours to make some change their mind to enable them to reach a verdict. Was some outside influence considered? I will bet there are some large schools in the Nashville area who are glad Signal are out. But they had better start checking their rosters, as had all the teams in TN. This puts the TSSAA ruling above the local district County decision to allow students to transfer. That means a good athlete may have to chose between a good education or playing sports. That is not what school is supposed to be about. If the county says you can attend a school then you should also be allowed to play sports there. The TSSAA has some crazy rules and perhaps it is time to revise them and maybe check out their role and rules regarding TN school sports. And finally to the ignorant few posters on here, all you are able to do is whine and crow and post, because the Eagles beat you, academically and on the sports field. You would show more maturity and intelligence if you went back to your school and helped make it better and more competitive, instead of knocking those that succeed. I wonder how you would feel seeing your 6 hard fought wins wiped out over a technicality. Oh wait a minute, you could not win a game, let alone 6, so ignore that question.

October 21, 2011 at 1:51 p.m.
TDMan said...

Don't be too fast to gloat. It ain't over until the fat man sings. And I'm the fat man who is going to bring a law suit against the TSSAA to insure they investigate and enforce the rules at every high school in the state. How's them apples? Watch the transfers start happeing in a hurry, coaches.

October 21, 2011 at 1:54 p.m.
nowfedup said...

OMG, parents will have to tell kids "IF you cheat you loose", or even worse yet, "Way to much emphasis on HS/College sports, now go learn something that will assure your future".

Amusing but predictable as USA dumbs down the over reactions about sports, which is NOT supposed to be about "stomping other side etc' rather to teach sportsmanship, a item buried long ago.

Sorry, but way down at the core, it is NOT sports then education, but EDUCATION, that is the goal. Absolutely disgusting how some have reacted, EDUCATION, NOT football, be it HS or college. USA dumbing down, TN at bottom of pile and it sure shows. What is the matter with you folks, kids are there to learn, not as some sort of manipulated toy to "Win and be nr 1". Anyone with double digit IQ knows this HS "sport recruiting" goes on, finally someone got caught. NOW would like to see follow up on how this kids education progress goes along. Dare we ask?

College is even worse as sports recruiting done openly, we really need to get a better grip on sports, as it is not longer, in any way "sports", is it?

October 21, 2011 at 1:54 p.m.
67melissamb said...

Whether these boys go to the playoffs or not, they are still winners and no one can take that away! Tim is an outstanding player however, with or without him being on the team, they would have won most of their games. Tim and the other boys on the team worked hard and this is just really unfortunate. Because Tim played a preseason scrimmage in Georgia, he is ineligible. Yes, I am from Signal Mountain. Yes, we are proud of our team JUST LIKE ALL FANS SHOULD BE OF THEIRS! I feel sorry for those of you that get joy out of this situation and I have no idea why there is so much "hatred" for such a small little town. For Tim, know you are "family" here on the mountain! We would rather have you here and NOT go to playoffs, than for you never to have come to SMMHS. Get the education that you deserve! Strive for greatness! And remember, when people talk about you, they took the time to THINK about you! God bless!

October 21, 2011 at 2:04 p.m.
WEBMAN said...


October 21, 2011 at 2:06 p.m.
ChattVegas said...

ChattVol06 - No need to drag the kids from Sequatchie County into this - they are as innocent as the Signal Mtn kids.

TSSAA is like the IRS - if they are ticked off at you - they will find something to justify their existence and their interpretation of rules.

This was a personal issue focussed at the Signal Mountain coach - and played out using the TSSAA to enact some revenge.

Again - for the folks up on Signal - the sun will come up tomorrow. Play hard and fair in your last game.

I wish a great game for both schools - and hope the coaches can shake hands at the end of the game.

October 21, 2011 at 2:10 p.m.
sra1952 said...

I always thought high school, for the most part, is a four year time in your life where things really start to happen, and to make a good start for your future. I really question how much of an inpact one year, even at the great SMHS, will be for what is ahead for this young man! I really do wish him the best of everything.

October 21, 2011 at 2:10 p.m.
motherof2sons said...

Hopefully Tim McClendon can get on with his life and get an education!! Football comes and goes but without an education where will he be? Let's hope SM stands behind him now that he is ineligible for sports and gets him the help he needs to graduate!! After all isn't that what started his move to SM originally.. to get an education??

October 21, 2011 at 2:28 p.m.
LetsBFair said...

I agree Recruiting at the High School level has to be stopped. So lets see, is it fair that Alco and Maryville, both schools allow tuition students that are out of zone to play and do not have to vacate their wins? So is the TSSAA saying that if the Perry County kids and the Signal Mountain kid would of paid a tuition fee they would of been eligible? Or is this just for the few? DOES NOT SEEM FAIR TO ME and yes I have had both Alco and Maryville posters say they have OOZ players(OUT OF ZONE) doesn't everybody? Come on, looks like to me TSSAA is promoting recruiting. LETS B FAIR

October 21, 2011 at 2:28 p.m.
potcat said...

They did the RIGHT thing. It was so blatant what SM did for football. The facts were so obvious, how did they think they could get by with it. A black boy from Brainard etc. etc. etc., SM wanted to give this hardship case a Education, not for Football reasons, Yeah right. SM your MORALS are showing and your EGOs are off the charts, give it a rest.

October 21, 2011 at 2:36 p.m.
67melissamb said...

Anyone who knows anything about this situation, KNOWS that we, here on Signal Mountain, have been behind Tim 100% from day one. That is never going to change! As a fan, I am so proud of the young men, on the team, that would rather stick by their teammate than to turn their backs. I really would have liked to see our guys go to playoffs but, more importantly, I have seen true friendship overcome! Sure, each and everyone of them are probably disappointed. But, no one can say that the community doesn't feel blessed to have Tim here. He is a remarkable young man. He has overcome a lot of adversity in his life, he will overcome this too! He may not have not gained a chance at a playoff but he has gained so much more...FAMILY!

October 21, 2011 at 2:48 p.m.
sra1952 said...

Tssaa does have some odd rules, example Georgia boys play baseball all year long together, and a lot of Tn boys playing on summer teams will get their butts kicked in the early summer games. However I believe if Tssaa really had it out for coach price, a six game wipe, could have been a year or two suspension for the coach!

October 21, 2011 at 2:51 p.m.
fan said...

it looks like you are either for or against Signal, that is usually the case in any controversial situation Signal attracts students and athletes from all over town just like the pretty girl attracts the boys at a party, that will continue, as long as they are legal... so be it (and they usually are) others have a right to question(discuss with TSSAA) the legality of students regardless of the motive, the TSSAA rendered it's decision( twice) you don't have to agree or disagree but we do have to honor it and move forwrd I believe they should cancel the Signal vs Sequatchie game becuase there will be no good outcome, Signal will try and run up the score... Sequatchie is going to be pissed and retaliate, fights will ensue, and there will be a black eye for both teams, and TSSAA will be watching and won't hesitate to act accordingly

October 21, 2011 at 2:54 p.m.
redandblack said...

Amen Englishman!!!! You are still WINNERS, EAGLES. Stay focused on your academics and football. Keep your heads high and look toward "next season" because you are the BEST. Show everyone what real WINNERS look like between now and then. One more game, GO FOR IT.

October 21, 2011 at 2:56 p.m.
dropstep said...

As a coach in Hamilton County I can attest that many schools are playing with players that are enrolled through the hardship process. Many times the player is not actively "recruited", but they decide to attend another school based on the athletic teams. I hope that this ruling will put an end to much of is rampant and district lines mean nothing in this county. I see middle school students all the time and ask then where they are going to attend high school and I hear many time, "I am not sure yet...". Not sure yet!?! Wouldn't they attend the high school they are in the district to attend? Nope, not here...a good softball player will get out of one school to attend a softball power (just an example), the same goes for boys and girls basktball and of course football. Obtaining a hardship in this county is pretty easy. I say that a hardship student not be allowed to play sports and I 100& guarantee that there will be dramatic drop in hardship cases brought to the system. There is no such thing as loyalty to a school or district, middle school athletes know this and sp do their parents. The county muct be vigilant in keepong kids to their assigned schools and stopping all this. Some coaches to actively recruit...we all know this. But the hardship loophole is hurting the county and schools. Thankfully this case has drawn attention to this and TSSAA does not recongnize a hardship for sports.

October 21, 2011 at 2:57 p.m.
redandblack said...

Gee Whiz the TSSAA has their work cut out for them investigating ineligible players and stripping them of their Titles and Wins the rest of the year. Think they are up to it?

October 21, 2011 at 3:20 p.m.
fortheboys said...

FREEDOM of Speech is great, but it seems like you all are forgetting that the Rules were broken and when you do wrong you have to suffer the consequences. It is a shame for the others on the team, but the Coach is the blame... He has a lot of appologizing to do to those boys. Yes sports are fun and teach some very important life lessons, but you are right when you say that EDUCATION is the most important outcome here. So get over it and stop pointing fingers and anticipating starting another fight after a game because you think you know who snitched on Signal Mtn. only the person who snitched knows who he or she is, so get over it and please don't show your tail at the last game of the season with a brawl, like you SM folks did in South Pitt last year... That was and would be inappropriate. SPORTSMANSHIP read up on the definition...... all of you!!!!!!!!!!!

October 21, 2011 at 3:23 p.m.
happygolucky said...

I have always encouraged my kids to participate in an extracurricular activity at school in addition to their academics. I feel that this helps to create a well rounded individual. I have one in college now that is pursuing a teaching degree. This all due to teachers and coaches she had in school. I have a child in HS now that participates in a sport. His coach makes sure that academics comes first by providing a study hall for them before practice. My point being that teachers, coaches, band directors, etc. should set an example for the young lives that they are involved with on a daily basis. Tim Price said that he has been teaching and filling out these kind of forms for what, 28 years. Then he should know exactly how the drill goes. The playing dumb act didn't work. I just hate that it was this young man that they made the example out of. The TSSAA made the decision they felt they had to. If the principal would have punished him for the whole Soddy Daisy mishap this may have never happened, because he said he would have quit. The principal should have called his bluff. By saying all of that, educators and coaches need to set an example for the students and student athletes.

October 21, 2011 at 3:28 p.m.
adolphochs said...

potcat said... ....It was so blatant what SM did for football. The facts were so obvious, how did they think they could get by with it...

The board then held a closed-door meeting to discuss the issue for nearly five hours before deciding to delay its vote until Friday morning.

Hey potcat, try reading the press release. If Signal's actions were "blantant" and "obvious" why would it take five hours of deliberations?

October 21, 2011 at 3:30 p.m.
MountainAir said...

Did anyone notice this was a majority decision and not a unanimous one? "The majority decision verdict " Wonder what the outcome would have been if there were 9 Board of Appeals Members there?

Guess there was some doubt by at least one or more of the members.

I also think it's odd that Brenard Childress and the TSSAA attorney get to continue participating in the deliberations. Doesn't matter if they have a vote if they get to continue giving their side of the story for 5+ hours without a representative from the school being present.

October 21, 2011 at 3:34 p.m.
georgiaboy30736 said...

Same situation happening now at Dalton High School. They are in the Playoffs, however, not as much of a stink is being raised about it as it is at Signal Mountain. Seems to me that someone had it in for Signal Mountain.

October 21, 2011 at 3:43 p.m.
footballmom said...

Give it a rest! Signal Mountain lost, if you don't like it.... file another appeal.

October 21, 2011 at 3:52 p.m.
pumpkineaters said...

ChattaVol06 - Good try...see if you can get some Indian fans and players going after that comment! You better believe the TSSAA would have you guys on probation and not eligible for 2012 post season and maybe beyond 2012 for playing him Friday nite!

October 21, 2011 at 3:55 p.m.
potcat said...

All i had to know is how many times Tim has moved every year. I have also read the News papper accounts. It does not take a SM bunch of liars to get the picture. It did not work for you, don't blame me, go by the rules next time instead of breaking the RULES to win football games.

October 21, 2011 at 3:57 p.m.
potcat said...

Five hours of deliberations... They had a lot of SM and Chatt. boys BSing them, they had to hear all that, to no avail, it did not wash..... YOU LOST!!! Quit Whinning, its very unbecoming.

October 21, 2011 at 4:10 p.m.
duckman said...

@ Potcat. What did the SM lie about?

October 21, 2011 at 4:10 p.m.
wilsoneddy said...

Just so you know potbat, pumpkineaters and all you other hateful people... the TSSAA has ok'd it for Tim Mcclendon to play next Friday night! Isn't that interesting? TSSAA possibly feeling a little guilty?

October 21, 2011 at 4:12 p.m.
MCGILLdawgs22 said...

For everyone that is trying to defend Signal Mountain... Tim was granted access to go to SMHS on a ACADEMIC HARDSHIP, TSSAA declaring him ineligible to play sports shouldnt be an issue right?? Because he went to the school for ACADEMICS. Dont try and cheat the system to play for a better sports team that is 20 miles away, (which creates another hardship in my mind) and cite that its for Academic purposes, and then get upset when he cant play sports. Saying that he did it for a better and more productive school environment doesnt change the athletics part of it. YOU CHEAT YOU LOSE.... eventually. I do feel sorry however for the other young men on the team im sure they worked hard all summer and fall for this and it was taken away by the uninformed actions of others. Signal Mountain is the best football team in there class in TN that cant be taken away!

October 21, 2011 at 4:15 p.m.
duckman said...

@ Pothead SM also has 44 "Black Kids as you put it" from Howards zone. Were they all recruted?? I think 7 of these kids play sports. Tim never played a down of highschool football in Tennessee and two quarters in Georgia last year. How is this recruting??

October 21, 2011 at 4:15 p.m.
LetsBFair said...

dropset said Hardship student not be allowed to play sports and I 100% guarantee that there will be dramatic drop in hardship cases brought to the system. I agree 100% with a lot of things you said. I do think there should be some exception tho, I think a hardship transfer should only be allowed to play sports if the svhool he was zone for does not offer that sport and only then should he be allowed to play for the next closest school that has that sport and not be able to pick were he wants to attend school. The TSSAA must be vigilant in keepong kids to their assigned schools and stopping all this. Some coaches actively recruit we all know this. This loophole must be closed if the TSSAA ever plan on stoping recruiting, some schools use it and others who try to abide by the rules are the only schools being hurt. Now if the was such a rule that OUT OF ZONE hardship transfers not be allowed to play sports,unless the school they were zoned for did not offer that sport was put in effect, this would stop most the recruiting I am sure. COME ON TSSAA STEP UP TO THE PLATE and DO THE RIGHT THING MAKE IT FAIR FOR EVERYBODY

October 21, 2011 at 4:16 p.m.
madambutterfly said...
  1. If a student legally changes addresses/schools, he/she is eligible to play a sport, regardless of whether or not they played at another school the year before.
  2. If a student does NOT change addresses, but transfers schools, they must apply to TSSAA for a hardship eligibility. Schools do this all the time. Sometimes they are approved, sometimes they are not.
  3. This student is zoned for Brainerd. When he "moved" back to Chattanooga from LFO, he should have attended Brainerd. He applied for an academic waiver to attend Signal Mt. because Brainerd is on the Target list. That is a Hamilton County decision to make, which they did. But Hamilton County, like every other school system in the state of Tennessee, has AGREED to follow TSSAA rules when it comes to athletic eligibility. Academic and athletic eligibilities are TWO DIFFERENT THINGS. You cannot equate the two. No one has said that Tim McClendon shouldn't have access to an excellent education. No one has said that he will not be able to graduate. THAT is up to him and Signal Mountain High School. But it is not the place of the school (any school for that matter), the coaches, the parents or the players to state who is eligible to PLAY. And everyone at the school knew that. And for goodness' sake, please stop blaming Sequatchie County! They were going to the playoffs regardless of what Signal did, based on the strength of their record! They had no reason to turn in Signal Mt. However, it really shouldn't matter WHO turned them in--the decision was made based on the actions of SMHS. Not who turned them in.
October 21, 2011 at 4:17 p.m.
thisguy123 said...

@WEBMAN according to the TSSAA bylaws and definitions private schools do have a territory which is a 20 mile radius from the school. Straight out of the by-laws: "For a non-public school, the “territory” of the school is the area within a twenty (20) mile radius from the school"

October 21, 2011 at 4:18 p.m.
pumpkineaters said...

wilsoneddy--Oh yeah TSSAA would punish a school for playing a "illegal" player then OK them to play him in the next game, bahahahahahaha! What are you smoking!?

October 21, 2011 at 4:28 p.m.
potcat said...

Why is Tim still going to play football next Friday, i thought he was there for Academics???

Ducky, i must have hit some sore points, Quit Whinning, go forth with thou Greatness and move on. You can't change the FACTS unfortunatly,if only you could,i am sure breaking the rules again would be NO problem.

October 21, 2011 at 4:29 p.m.


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October 21, 2011 at 4:38 p.m.


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October 21, 2011 at 4:40 p.m.


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October 21, 2011 at 4:42 p.m.
eaglesalltheway said...

jealous bro? I think so!!!

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October 21, 2011 at 4:40 p.m. permalink suggest removal

October 21, 2011 at 5:56 p.m.
1982indian said...

Hey Duck man You all need to watch them Indians. They might whip Signal Mtns butts literaly. Got to love all them red necks over there. Price may play McClendon, so what the next week SM will be at home and the good ole Sequatchie County Indians will be in the playoffs. So who really has the last laugh. hahahahahahahahahahaha

October 21, 2011 at 5:59 p.m.
footballmom said...

Good for Tim, I am glad he is getting to play the last game! Some of you act like that would bother Sequatchie County, we don't roll like that, it was never about was about the "mistake in paperwork".

October 21, 2011 at 6:29 p.m.
chattanooga said...

The TSSAA is not after anyone person, coach, or team. They had rules, they were not followed and they ruled accordingly. It is terrible for the entire Signal Mtn. team, community and worst of all the young man at the center of this issue. Those of you that are happy in some way are missing the point. Those of you that think the TSSAA was on a witch hunt are wrong. The TSSAA looks into the paperwork after a possible violation has been reported. Their okay of the transfer request was based on information that was not accurate. Coach Price checked a box that said the address listed for the student was in the team that was applying for the transfer school zone, it did not have an * that said "if player has been granted a hardship due to social and academic reasons by a department of education in the students area this automatically qualifies any residence as in zone" If he would have checked no and filled out the hardship request that would have followed all this might not be an issue, it may have been denied but the team would not have lost their season. After 28 years in the business I am surprised that the mistake happened, but coaches are humans to.

October 21, 2011 at 6:40 p.m.
WHS1970 said...

The SMHS coach cheated, got caught, got penalized, appealed the decision, lost the appeal. If Price feels any embarrassment,maybe he can understand how other team players feel after he goes for an onside kick after building a 35 point lead. I would not want him to coach a kid of mine. I don't begrudge SMHS players for their success, but money can't buy class and he ain't got none.

October 21, 2011 at 7:03 p.m.
ldurham said...

What we have learned: this whole affair revealed a lot of truths about Signal Mountain's coaches, their philosophy of recruiting athletes, their lack of sportsmanship, their reluctance to follow rules, and their tendency to blame others for their mistakes.

We learned of Signal Mountain's surprising generosity: that they opened their doors to a student who had struggled at many, many other schools. And we're told the fact that he was a strapping young athlete played no part in their benevolence. It will indeed be rewarding to see others from Brainerd and beyond take advantage of Signal's welcoming attitude in the years to come, whether they are 6-foot-3, or 5-foot-2. They have boasted many times how they've helped this one child. I'm sure they'll offer to help other troubled, learning-disabled, out-of-zone, non-athletic children who are afraid of being stabbed or bullied. I hope teachers and parents will go to central office to beg hardship transfers, just as they did for this young man.

It also revealed some surprising facts about the ease in which one can graduate at Signal compared to a school in a neighboring state.

There were details revealed about Signal Mountain's willingness to hire a teacher with few qualifications other than his ability to bring along a similarly well-traveled football player.

One of the few winners in this scandal is Lakeview Ft. Oglethorpe High School. They have remained silent, classy and stoic amid a barrage of made-up stories about it being a bad learning environment. Nothing could be further from the truth. And now everyone knows, thanks to Signal Mountain's own testimony, that LFO's standards to graduate are so high, at least one student had to cross a state line, cross a river and climb a mountain to find an easier way to get a diploma.

We've seen how Signal Mountain behaves after a big, lopsided win. We will now see how they handle a huge loss. Hopefully it will be with class and good sportsmanship.

October 21, 2011 at 7:15 p.m.
chattanooga said...

wow tssaa says the kid would have been eligible are the last game played at LFO but they still lose the 6 games and he can play next week! so much for the integrity of their rules....

October 21, 2011 at 7:33 p.m.
tnfootballmom said...

The TSSAA will investigate any complaint. Well here goes. I will file a complaint against any/all TN high schools.

October 21, 2011 at 7:41 p.m.
sandstorm66 said...

Well, its finally over, I feel sorry for the people who did the right thing. One thing they need on Signal Mtn. is a sewage treatment facility because of all the old, failing septic systems and field lines maybe they can demolish SMHS and build it there, it's the perfect location because of all the SH-T in the administration at SMHS coaches, principal, and A.D. Maybe the Hamilton Co. Dept. of Ed. will clean house on the mtn. Remember it could've been worse the TSSAA could've barred the coaches from coaching in Tennessee ever again. GOOD JOB TSSAA!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

October 21, 2011 at 8:08 p.m.
dl said...

I wish a news story on academics would get this much response....sigh

October 21, 2011 at 8:13 p.m.
sandstorm66 said...

Maybe Dr. Smith will stand up to "Wild Bill" and rid the system of the SMHS wild west show!!!!

October 21, 2011 at 8:24 p.m.
sandstorm66 said...

Good night and good luck to all the schools playing ball tonight!!!! Especially my son!!!!

October 21, 2011 at 8:30 p.m.
art said...

ldurham - You forgot that we learned that you like writing more than you like reading and twisting facts more than stating them.

October 21, 2011 at 9:11 p.m.
ldurham said...

Go for it art: what have I written that isn't factual?

October 21, 2011 at 9:26 p.m.
my3boys said...

1982indian: u have got to give me a break. u are definately hallucinating when u think seq will beat smhs. u r in playoffs on luck. any team to barely beat whitwell, doesnt have much of a team. smhs doesnt need tim to beat schs by 100 points. and yeh the eagles may be home the next weak, but trust me, they will be enjoying seeing all of u get your buts beat out the first week of playoffs..cause yall are not state material......keep on dreaming

October 21, 2011 at 9:38 p.m.
my3boys said...

whitwell 1970: an onside kick with 35 on the board is not embarassing. there are 60+ kids on smhs that deserve to play, and do whatever it takes to score. all kids have the right to play there hardest and feel good about the job they have done. the fact is, that smhs's JV team could beat most anyone they play on any given day. so whether it is the 2nd string or the 5th string, they deserve the same opportunities. if teams are not at the same level as SMHS, they need to refuse to play them, so they will have to arrange a different game. regardless of who they play, no matter what classification, someone is always gonna have an excuse as to why they when u get beat by a team 75-0, dont hold hard feelings, just face the facts, even if it was the 3rd, 4th and 5th string that beat u. however, i do commend the program at whitwell for improving. they have descent athletes, but they lack the makes a difference

October 21, 2011 at 9:49 p.m.
WacondaVol said...

Idurham, you did not bother to actually state any facts. FACT: TSSAA has stated there was no recruiting in this case. So that is half of your bigoted comments gone. FACT: SMMHS has over 100 out of zone students, of which only 7 play any sports. Just reading these posts would have shown you 44 students from the Howard zone alone go to SMMHS. FACT: The teacher you say is unqualified was hired and at SMMHS well before this student broached the idea of going to SMMHS. But you believe the parents on Signal Mountain only want unqualified teachers. they must really hate their kids to want them to have a bad education. You are an idiot. FACT: The student involved had never played a down of regular season football at any high school. He did play and get hurt in a pre-season game at LFO. So of course, that would be enough to shop his skills to the highest bidder. I find it real hard to understand how Lane Kippen at USC had not already given him a scholarship. You are an idiot again. FACT: Georgia schools are required to give exit exams. Tennessee are not. That is not just SMMHS, but also Brainerd and all the rest. Having lived in Georgia before and seeing the many students that cannot pass that test, it would have been smart for any student wanting to get a high school diploma and having a learning ability, to look for a way to get extra help in any way possible. The fact that at SMMHS he would be at a school which because of the financial ability of the school, could offer him that help, only proves that he is indeed a smart kid. There are 44 kids from the Howard zone that evidentially agree, along with many other out of zone students. Comment: While many others posting comments, seem to think that this proves a problem with too much attention on sports and not education, I interpret it differently. All testimony and other information given says this student and his family made the decision and daily sacrifice to have him attend SMMHS for EDUCATION. He could have played football at other schools, where he would have gotten as much or more attention by any possible colleges because of being in larger classification. But he believed that SMMHS would offer him the best chance to do his best. EDUCATION was the reason he chose SMMHS, not football. This comes down to a paperwork issue, where someone interpreted something wrong on the form (at least according to TSSAA), and because of whatever reason, the students are the ones being punished unfairly. One other FACT: I live in Harrison and do not really care if SMMHS goes to the playoffs or not. I do regret seeing students punished unfairly, no matter where they are from. From everything that has been said or done since this came to light, the TSSAA has handled the issue very badly.

October 21, 2011 at 11:08 p.m.
footballmom said...

IN RESPONSE TO................................................................. my3boys said... 1982indian: u have got to give me a break. u are definately hallucinating when u think seq will beat smhs. u r in playoffs on luck. any team to barely beat whitwell, doesnt have much of a team. smhs doesnt need tim to beat schs by 100 points. and yeh the eagles may be home the next weak, but trust me, they will be enjoying seeing all of u get your buts beat out the first week of playoffs..cause yall are not state material......keep on dreaming

WHO DO YOU THINK YOU ARE? Somewhere in your thick, pig headed skull try to remember, you are upset with the adults involved in this...NOT the kids that play for Sequatchie....remember they are innocent in all this!So stop putting them down, they deserve to be where they are. YOU FEEL BETTER TELLING HIGH SCHOOL KIDS THEY ARE NOT STATE MATERIAL? Does it help your hurt feelings? Sequatchie would be in the playoffs either way the decision went, so we are not there on luck! You talk pretty big on here, run your mouth like that to one of Sequatchie's parents and see where that gets ya my3boys!

October 21, 2011 at 11:50 p.m.
potcat said...

Sandstorm, Hamilton Co. got a Grant to replace old sewer lines from home to street, guess who got the MAJORITY of that grant money and work done, SM....

October 22, 2011 at 9:17 a.m.
victrix01 said...

LOL... footballmom, you make me laugh. What a hypocrite you are. You want to chastise my3boys for their comment (to 1982indian who I doubt is a child). Why are you not chastising all these other people who keep making negative comments about Signal Mountain during this whole situation? Yes it was the faculty that made the mistake but ultimately it is only hurting the kids, especially the seniors. People are calling the kids cheaters and worse but you are not jumping to their defense.

You are right; they are just kids, including the players from SM who have been wronged in this situation. You want to throw idle threats around, but being a "footballmom" you would be even less happy if this was happening to your children. If the roles were reversed all the "classy" peopel from Sequatchie would certainly show their true selves.

October 22, 2011 at 10:23 a.m.
victrix01 said...

MemphisGuy25 said... fball2011fan...this will not happen to me or my kids because I will follow the rules and NOT try to cheat the system!

MemphisGuy25, your arrogance is ridiculous. To laugh at this situation when it is only hurting a bunch of kids really shows your true character. What you seem to not be able to comprehend is that the faculty and the TSSAA are to blame here not the kids. However, it's not hurting anyone as much as it is hurting the players and Tim. And for you to be so arrogant and say "this will not happen to me or my kids because I will follow the rules and NOT try to cheat the system" is amusing. Are you their coach, do you have control of what goes on? Most parents do not have control of the coaches, etc... So unless you are in control you are sadly mistaking if you think this can not happen to them. The truth is all schools, public and private could have this happen. So if I were you I would keep the gloating to a minimum because you never know.

October 22, 2011 at 10:31 a.m.
sra1952 said...

tnfootballmom, to file a complaint for each school, you would need a real name and facts, on each team! good luck!

October 22, 2011 at 10:35 a.m.
victrix01 said...

Oh but wouldn't it be something if you could file one for each school. All the people who have been bashing Signal Mountain would be eating crow. Especially all the schools around here (i.e. East Hamilton, Soddy Daisy, Red Bank, Bradley, Cleveland, Bledsoe, Sequatchie, South Pitt). Not to mention schools elsewhere (Alcoa, Maryville, Greeneville, Smyrna, Trousdale, etc).

I'm sorry... did I really just say it happens everywhere? :) That's right no one does anything wrong but SM .

October 22, 2011 at 10:48 a.m.
footballmom said...

victrix01, you need to get your facts straight.... Look back at every comment I have made since this started, I hate it for those kids at SM, especially Tim, and I have expressed that from the beginning...But I do not agree with the bashing the kids from Sequatchie is taking on here and other similar boards either! State you opinions, I will continue to state mine, but back off the kids in Sequatchie By the way I don't believe 1982indian is a child, my comment was referring to " yall are not state material" (I am pretty sure it was referring to our current team)...THE ADULTS ARE THE ONES RESPONSIBLE FOR YOUR TROUBLES UP THERE!

October 22, 2011 at 10:50 a.m.
victrix01 said...

FOOTBALLMOM, you are right it is the adults who are at fault. However, I have read your comments... oh those poor kids from SM huh? "You guys had no problem being in the spotlight when it was all good, did ya? Reap what you sow...I just hope TSSAA digs a little deeper" "The whole team is gonna have to be punished, that is the only way to teach everyone (not just Signal) that TSSAA is watching and you will get caught and you will pay the PRICE if you cheat!"


October 22, 2011 at 11:23 a.m.
eaglesalltheway said...

Oh my gosh would you all just shut the hell up. If you don't have a child or are a student at SMHS you don't have a clue about what your talking about. Oh and if you don't have ties to the school then you also DON'T KNOW US so how can you say the crap you do about couch price and the school. He is my teacher and a great person. You may not be jealous but while your on here talking trash our parents are making sure we have the best education and really that is all that matters. Grow up and move on with your pathetic lives.

October 22, 2011 at 12:04 p.m.
potcat said...

Oh,we know you alright, who the hell do you think your talking to, last i checked SM was part of Hamilton CO. So it is OUR business, and don't you forget it! Pathetic, well we might not live own SM, and i don't want to, you move on with your PATHETIC Charade!

I know a girl who weighs about 300 lbs. and shes having a hard time at her school, how about a hardship case to go SM, what you say?

October 22, 2011 at 12:52 p.m.
eaglesalltheway said...

I just think everyone needs to get over it. I know my parents don't sit on a computer talking about a bunch of children who are underage, your not hurting the coaches and administration your hurting us, the students. I am pretty sure if someone was talking about your kids you would be just as pissed as my parents along with hundreds of parents up here and no its none of your business. And secondly you don't know the crap Tim has gone through I mean we have kids bused up here every year because we score some of the highest scores in the county, people only have a problem with Tim because he is an amazing athlete. And considering everything people have said on here about us, I have every right to finally stand up for my school.

October 22, 2011 at 2:06 p.m.
Trololololol said...

According to my Tssaa experience, if the entire SMMHS football team gets into a spaceship and goes faster than the speed of light, they will go back in time and prevent this from happening. Now, I know what you're thinking, "mr. Genius man, where would they fly to." the answer is just a few times around the earth. U JELLY?

October 23, 2011 at 10:23 p.m.
Trololololol said...

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October 23, 2011 at 10:24 p.m.
MountainJoe said...

No disrespect to Signal's players (including Mr. McClendon) or anyone else's players. Teenage kids (14-18) generally only do what the adults tell/allow them to do.

The fact is that this whole situation is the fault of the adults in question. Specifically, the football coach and the principal.

Did they falsify the paperwork of an obviously ineligible student in order to achieve wins on the field? Possibly, but I don't think anyone has the evidence to prove that.

Did they just plain screw up, not realizing that the student in question might not be eligible according to TSSAA rules? More likely. "Never ascribe to malice what can adequately be explained by incompetence."

Either way, deliberate or accidental, it is the fault of the adults.

A competent and ethical coach (and/or principal) would have realized that this was a unique situation and would have delivered all relevant facts to the TSSAA for an eligibility decision BEFORE the student ever played in a game. Because that would have preserved the integrity of each contest, and would have balanced the student's interests with those of the other students, his school, and the opposing schools.

If you want to hate on anyone, put the blame on the coach and the principal, who had the responsibility to assure that the rules were followed.

Not on the player, not on the opponents, but on the adults who (either accidentally or on purpose) screwed up.

October 26, 2011 at 11:21 p.m.
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