Prep Sports

The boss went to Signal Mountain and prep editor Stephen Hargis chose to go see Tyner and Ooltewah.

Finally. No more passing leagues, scrimmages or jamborees. Just honest-to-goodness, bone-jarring, trash-talking Friday night football.

With just one week remaining before the high school football season kicks off, tonight's jamborees serve as a sort of dress rehearsal for area teams. Besides being the first chance for coaches to size up untested talent under the glare of packed bleachers and the atmosphere of the Friday night lights, it also whets the appetite for those of us who have waited for the game's return.

The high school football season is finally within sight, and whether a team realistically can win a state championship or maybe just one game, there isn't a better time of year.

Like any good gambler, Scott Smith works on his poker face. With only weeks left before the TSSAA awards a new two-year contract for the right to host its annual Spring Fling, the president of the Greater Chattanooga Sports & Events Committee refuses to tip his hand on his bid-proposal presentation.

When Jill Olmack nominated her daughter for Miss National Softball Association last month, listing reasons why Devin deserved the award was easy.

"There's no place in the world better than what you have right here in Chattanooga."

A high school coach's job description always has included much more than X's and O's. As part psychologists, parent figures or just sounding boards for the growing pains of teenage frustration, teachers and coaches are among the most underpaid, underappreciated professionals we have.

Never let it be said that Howard football coach Alvin Tarver pads the Hustlin' Tigers' schedule with patsies. Needing one more game to fill out this season's schedule, Tarver agreed to a two-year deal with perennial state power Alcoa, with Howard hosting this year on Sept. 25.

It has become a chilling certainty. Each summer as high school football practice begins, those of us who follow the sport closely hold our collective breath and hope this will be the year that no one succumbs to the blistering heat.

Mark July 13 on your calendars. That's the day Chattanooga attempts to regain custody of the baby it birthed 15 years ago before a bunch of charlatans from Memphis stole her away.

The Tennessee Secondary School Athletics Association must be mightily impressed with the quality of the state's education system. Otherwise it would never have instituted a new football playoff format that only Einstein or Bill Gates could decipher.

It was about this time three years ago that my relationship with Chris Bono really began.

There was stunned silence for several seconds after the TSSAA Board of Control voted Wednesday to award Cookeville a two-year contract to host the BlueCross Bowl.

Taylor Harris is a still a year away from a regular roster spot on the Fury Fastpitch 16-under softball team. A rising sophomore at Girls Preparatory School, the catcher will spend most of this summer on the Fury’s 14-under squad.

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