McMinn County Cherokees (9-2) at Maryville Rebels (10-1)
Kickoff, 7 p.m. EDT
The coaches: McMinn's Bo Cagle; Maryville's George Quarles.
Playoff history: Playing at home, McMinn bested Oak Ridge 12-7 while Maryville was destroyed visiting Kingsport Dobyns-Bennett 41-0. Cherokees have a postseason record of 12-15. This will be the first playoff meeting for the two schools. With the exception of 2005, Maryville has played a Chattanooga area team in the playoffs every year since 1997. The Rebels have been to the state finals every year since a semifinal loss in 2003. They won state titles in 2000, 2001, 2002, 2004, 2005, 2006 and 2007 and were runners-up in 2008.
Things you may want to know: Maryville defeated McMinn 49-6 earlier this year and the Cherokees then went on an eight-game win streak to earn a return match. ... Rebels have four shutouts this season and three came at home. They lost to undefeated Alcoa, the top-ranked 3A team, in the season opener and have since won 10 straight. The closest they came to a second loss was a 35-32 victory at Farragut. ... Teams' only common opponent is Oak Ridge, which fell to Maryville 21-13. ... Maryville QB Phillip Juhlin completed 72.9 percent of his passes for 1,280 yards and 17 TDs with just one interception in the regular season. ... Rebels' leading rusher is Buddy Jones, who had 628 yards in 10 games with a 6.3 average per carry. However, Jacob West led the team in rushing touchdowns with seven. ... Two receivers (Desmund Horne and Stian Romberg) have 20-plus receptions but there are four Rebels with at least 12 catches.
Getting there from here: I-75 North to exit 81 (Lenoir City/Oak Ridge), turn right and go 21.8 miles to US-411. School is a half-mile away. Take slight right onto West Broadway Ave., and then turn left onto South Cedar Street and then left onto Lawrence Avenue.
The winner gets: The winner between Bearden (9-2) and Farragut (9-2).
Fulton Falcons (8-3) at Red Bank Lions (11-0)
Kickoff, 7 p.m. EDT
The coaches: Fulton's Buck Coatney; Red Bank's Tim Daniels.
Playoff history: Fulton played at home and beat East Ridge 30-14; Red Bank also was at home and bested Gibbs 48-8. The Falcons have been to the state finals five times and earned three times. Their most recent state title came in 2006. They did not make the 2008 playoffs. Red Bank, which won a state crown in 2000, has not managed to get past the quarterfinals since and they exited after just one game a year ago. Last week's win pushed their overall postseason record a game over .500 at 21-20. Under Daniels, they have a 7-6 record. The teams have never met in the playoffs.
Things you may want to know: Two of Fulton's losses came in back-to-back weeks to Austin East and Alcoa. Their other loss was 14-11 to Gatlinburg Pittman. ...The Falcons are on a three-game win streak and they have scored 138 points in those games. ... Dametrius Thomas ran for 954 yards in nine regular season games and he went over 1,000 for the season with 121 against East Ridge. ... Falcons QB Ben Winters completed 55.6 percent of his passes in the regular season but had only three TD passes as opposed to four interceptions. He was picked off once by East Ridge.
Getting here from there: Take I-40 West to I-75/I-40 junction and bear left on I-75 South. Continue to I-75/I-24 junction and bear right at the junction on I-24. Proceed to I-24/Hwy. 27 North junction and bear right onto Hwy. 27. Stay on Hwy. 27 North to Morrison Springs Road. Turn left and go approximately one mile. School will be on left.
The winner gets: The winner between Brainerd (8-3) and Greeneville (8-3).
Brainerd Panthers (8-3) at Greeneville Green Devils (8-3)
Kickoff, 7 p.m. EDT
The coaches: Brainerd's Marvin Jones; Greeneville's Caine Ballard.
Playoff history: Brainerd will be on the road for the second straight week after a 26-20 win over Claiborne County; Greeneville stays at home following a 42-6 win over Central. Brainerd is advancing past the first round for the first time since 2000. The Panthers were 0-2 since until last week's win. They have a postseason record of 6-10. This is the first time the teams have met in the postseason. Greeneville got to the semifinals before losing to Maryville last year. The Green Devils have a 20-18 playoff record.
Things you may want to know: The Green Devils are on a five-game win streak and have scored 265 points in that stretch (53 points per game). ... They beat Claiborne 45-0 two weeks ago. ... Greeneville QB Wes Quarles threw for 1,569 yards in the regular season with nine TDs and 13 interceptions. ... Leading receivers were Rob Wright and Landon Morrison. Wright had 38 catches, more than double that of Morrison. ... Leading rusher was Trey Anderson.
Getting there from here: Take I-75 N and go about 100 miles to I-640 East (Exit 385) toward Lexington. Go almost 11 miles and take I-40 East (bearing left) toward Asheville. Go to I-80 North toward Bristol and go 22.5 miles. Merge onto US-11 East and go 11.6 miles before taking the TN 70 South/US-11 East exit toward Greeneville. Merge onto West Summer Street and go 1.5 miles, turning left onto South Main Street. Go a half-mile and turn right onto Tusculum Boulevard. School should be visible on right.
The winner gets: The winner between Red Bank (11-0) and Knox Fulton (8-3).
Loudon Redskins (9-2) at Polk County Wildcats (11-0)
Kickoff, 7 p.m. EDT
The coaches: Loudon's Jeff Harig; Polk County's Derrick Davis.
Playoff history: Loudon pounded Bledsoe County 42-15 in Pikeville; Polk rolled 29-0 over Kingston. The two teams have one previous postseason meeting, a 1986 game won by Loudon. The Redskins reached the quarterfinals a year ago when they fell to Alcoa 34-0. They have a 30-16 all-time postseason record. Polk, 8-17 in playoff games, had not won a playoff game since a 26-0 win over Westmoreland in 2002. The Wildcats had lost seven straight since.
Things you may want to know: Polk and Loudon scrimmaged in the preseason. ... Both coaches are fond of the running game (two tight end sets are common) but both have quarterbacks (Polk's Jared Allen and Loudon's Wade Plemons) who are equally adept at running or throwing. ... Both teams played Bradley Central -- Polk won 20-13, Loudon 14-10. ... Loudon beat Sweetwater 45-0 while Polk won 43-6. ... Loudon beat Kingston, the other common opponent and Polk's first-round victim last week, by 36-7. ... Polk coaches, because of a film exchange with Kingston, got an early look at the Redskins and likely spent much of last week scheming for the Redskins. ... Loudon pulled its starters with 5:00 left in the third quarter against Bledsoe after gaining a running clock with a 35-point lead (42-7). ... Harig originally came to Loudon from Ohio as an assistant to Tim Daniels, now coaching at Red Bank.
Getting here from there: From Exit 72, take I-75 South to exit 52 and turn left over freeway on Mt. Verd Road. Go five miles and take slight left onto US-11. Go nine miles to US-4111 and go approximately 12 miles. School will be on the left.
The winner gets: The winner between Alcoa (11-0) and Christian Academy of Knoxville ((10-1).
Marion County Warriors (7-4) at Boyd-Buchanan Buccaneers (9-1)
Kickoff, 7 p.m. EDT
The coaches: Marion's Troy Boeck; Boyd-Buchanan's Grant Reynolds.
Playoff history: Marion defeated Forrest 20-17 on the road while Boyd-Buchanan had a bye. These two met last year in the quarterfinals with Marion capturing a 7-6 win. Both teams have state championships and long playoff histories.
Things you may want to know: Forrest (9-2) was the No. 4 seed in the second quadrant of the bracket; Marion is No. 6 and Boyd No. 1. ... Boyd bested Marion earlier this season. The Warriors had two starters sitting out that game because they had been ejected from a game the previous week.
Getting here from there: Totally unnecessary, surely. Marion folks have already been here once this year and also played at Boyd in the playoffs last year. Anyway, here it is if there are Rip Van Winkles in Jasper: I-24 East to Moore Road. Turn left and continue approximately 5 miles (past Brainerd High). Entrance to Boyd-Buchanan will be on the right.
The winner gets: The winner between Signal Mountain (10-1) and Cascade (7-3).
Signal Mountain Eagles (10-1) at Cascade Champions (7-3)
Kickoff, 7 p.m. EDT
The coaches: Signal Mountain's Bill Price; Cascade's Kenny Parker.
Playoff history: Signal Mountain may be the only team in the state with a perfect playoff record. The Eagles are 1-0. They defeated Silverdale Baptist 63-23 while Cascade enjoyed a bye. Cascade, 4-8 in playoff games, reached the quarterfinals last year.
Things you may want to know: Cascade's colors are orange, black and white. Folks on Signal will remember their first meeting against a team with a similar color scheme. They were bullied by South Pittsburg -- their only loss of the regular season. ... That loss may be the only game in which Signal starters played much beyond the midway point of the third quarter. ... Cascade QB completed 94 of 154 passes for 1,155 yards and 18 TDs with five interceptions. ... Matt Henderson was the Champions' leading rusher with 773 yards. ... Their leading receiver was Tyler Bowen with 27 catches for 425 yards and six TDs.
Getting there from here: Take I-24 West and proceed about 83 miles. Take exit 97 toward Shelbyville and turn left, going slightly less than two miles. Turn left onto TN-64/Beech Grove Road and then turn right onto TN-82 (Sawnee Webb Memorial Highway). Go five miles and turn left onto TN-269 (Wartrace Road) and go 1.7 miles to Cascade High.
The winner gets: The winner between Boyd-Buchanan (9-1) and Marion County (7-4)
Eagleville Eagles (4-7) at South Pittsburg Pirates (8-2)
Kickoff, 8 p.m. EDT
The coaches: Eagleville's Steve Carson; South Pittsburg's Vic Grider.
Playoff history: While South Pittsburg enjoyed a bye, Eagleville shut out Monterey 42-0. South Pittsburg won the 2007 state title. The Pirates have been eliminated in a first game only five times in 27 years when they qualified for the playoffs. Their overall record is 52-22. They have never played Eagleville in the postseason. Eagleville is 0-1 in playoff games. They lost 42-14 in their only previous appearance (2005).
Things you may want to know: South Pitt defeated Signal Mountain 48-20 and Signal defeated Eagleville three weeks later 33-13. ... Eagles QB Will Duke throws only an average of eight times per game, completing about 40 percent. He will run and is his team's No. 3 rusher behind Trint Jordan and Nathan Jernigan. ... His primary receiver has been Will Akins (19-201). ... Jernigan is the team's leading tackler.
Getting here from there: Pick up I-24 East and go 72 miles, exiting at South Pittsburg (Exit 152) and turning right onto US-72. Go slightly more than a mile and bear right on TN-156 for one mile. Stadium should be visible on the left.
The winner gets: The winner between Gordonsville (7-4) and Middle Tennessee Christian (4-6).
Baylor Red Raiders (7-4) at Memphis University School Owls (10-0)
Kickoff, 8 p.m. EDT
The coaches: Baylor's Phil Massey; MUS' Bobby Alston.
Playoff history: MUS had a bye last week as Baylor strolled past St. Benedict 42-10. That win was the Red Raiders' first in the postseason since a 2006 win over MUS. Baylor's record in the postseason is 19-20. The Red Raiders haven't been to a state championship game since 1977. MUS (37-21) is the division's defending state champion. The Owls and Baylor have played three playoff games with the Red Raiders winning two of those.
Things you may want to know: Massey was an assistant at MUS before coming to Baylor. ... The Red Raiders threw only six passes and none were thrown by regular starting QB Jacob Huesman, who sat out with a bruised right (throwing) shoulder sustained the week before in a loss to Father Ryan. ... MUS QB and West Virginia commitment Barry Brunetti threw for 1,705 yards and 19 TDs.
Getting there from here: Take I-24 West to exit 72 (South Pittsburg/Kimball) Merge onto US-72 and go 71 miles to I-565 W for 21.5 miles. I-565 becomes US-72A for 47 miles and US-72A becomes US-72 W (119 miles and passing through Mississippi and back into Tennessee). Pick up Bill Morris Parkway toward Memphis and go 12 miles to Ridgeway Road, taking the North Ridgeway ramp, got 1.6 miles to Park Avenue and turn right.
The winner gets: The winner between Briarcrest (7-4) and Father Ryan (7-3).
FALLING BY THE WAYSIDE
Ooltewah (9-2): When was the last time the Owls lost consecutive games? Jacques Smith's suspension aside, a disappointing finish after a 9-0 start.
Cleveland (3-8): The Blue Raiders came so close. Again. So it's going to take E.K. Slaughter longer at Cleveland than it did at Soddy-Daisy. They were two points from an upset against the No. 1 seed in their quadrant. Surely Cleveland folks realize what they have.
East Ridge (7-4): Another year making the playoffs for Coach Mike Martin.
Bledsoe County (8-3): Disappointing way to end the year but a great start for a young coach. Folks in Pikeville were wondering why York Institute basically drove by Polk to go play Sequatchie.
Grundy County (5-6): They came so close to pulling off a major upset of Goodpasture. A sign of things to come for a young and enthusiastic coach intent on rebuilding his alma mater's program?
McMinn Central (7-4): A bitter pill to swallow but they'll clear the decks and take on more of first-year coach Josh Goodin's qualities.
Sequatchie County (6-5): Back-to-back winning seasons have been hard to come by and Indians faithful ought to be proud.
Tyner (6-5): Disappointing first-round opponent they shouldn't have seen till the third round, if then. What was the TSSAA thinking?
Silverdale Baptist (5-6): A bit of an off year by John Allen's standards but still the Seahawks' second straight playoff year.
Lookout Valley (7-4): What do you have to do to catch a break? In the same district with top-ranked South Pittsburg. Still, you finish 7-3 and get seeded sixth behind a 5-5 team and a 3-7 team? There are kinks in the system.