Red Bank High School left tackle Myles Smith has been invited to the U.S. Army's Junior Combine in San Antonio in early January. The combine is held in conjunction with the Army's senior all-star game, which features many of the country's best high school players.
"He's been our best offensive lineman so far, consistently getting one of the highest grades each week," Lions coach E.K. Slaughter said.
The 6-foot-4, 260-pound Smith and the Lions host Signal Mountain tonight.
When Copper Basin coach Patrick Daley leads his team onto the field tonight at Tellico Plains, he'll be staring across the way at a guy for whom he played fullback and linebacker a little more than 30 years ago.
John Mullinax's first high school head coaching job was at Copper Basin, where after the 1983 season -- his fourth in Copperhill and Daley's junior year -- he left to coach at McMinn County. Daley's defensive coordinator, Rusty Boggs, also played for Mullinax at Copper Basin as a quarterback and defensive end.
Mullinax spent 19 years guiding the Cherokees and eight at Armuchee, Ga., before accepting the Tellico Plains position in 2012. Daley isn't expecting any favors from his former coach, who got his 200th coaching victory late last season.
"It's a game," Daley said. "We're going to get after it, and after it's over we'll be buddies again. I'm sure that's his attitude, too. I learned it from him."
Two for Whitwell
The area rushing leader belongs to Whitwell, and the Tigers are the only area team with two players in the top 10 based on statistics reported by area schools and compiled by the Times Free Press.
Clay McHone is just 3 yards shy of 500 three games into the season, averaging 7 yards per carry and 165.7 per game. Fellow sophomore Cody Ingrassia is No. 10 with 297 yards and 99 yards per game; he has a per-carry average of 7.8.
Trojans early No. 1
If the season ended today the No. 1 seed in the GHSA Class A public school playoffs would be ... Gordon Lee?
Yes, the Trojans, 5-6 last year, are atop the initial power ratings after a 2-0 start with a 17.00 total, more than three points ahead of No. 2 Commerce. Trion, also 2-0, is in eighth place at 12.00. The key to Gordon Lee's rise is wins over two Class AAA programs, Lakeview-Fort Oglethorpe and Coahulla Creek.
Wins against higher-classification teams earn Class A teams more points, and the Trojans will earn more points for every game LFO and Coahulla Creek win this year. Gordon Lee coach Charlie Wiggins isn't worried about power points right now, but he isn't ignoring them.
"It's nice to have the points, but the key is we have to win games," he said.
Ward Gossett is an assistant sports editor and writer for the Times Free Press. Ward has a long history in Chattanooga journalism. He actually wrote a bylined story for the Chattanooga News-Free Press as a third-grader. He Began working part-time there in 1968 and was hired full time in 1970. Ward now covers high school athletics, primarily football, wrestling and baseball and University of Tennessee at Chattanooga wrestling. Over a 40-year career, he has covered ...
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(Coaches are invited to make nominations. Send an email to Ward Gossett at firstname.lastname@example.org by 6 p.m. each Saturday.)
(All kickoffs at 7:30 EDT unless noted)
(Coaches are invited to make nominations. Send an email to Ward Gossett at email@example.com by 9 p.m. each Saturday.)
(All kickoffs are 7:30 p.m. Eastern unless noted)