Bradley Central (7-3) at Cookeville (6-4)
Nicknames: Bears, Cavaliers
Coaches: Bradley's Damon Floyd, Cookeville's Jerry Joslin
The season: The Cavaliers lost two of their last three games but those two losses were to unbeatens Mt. Juliet (52-0) and Riverdale (44-7). The win was over Coffee County (43-29). The Cavaliers' season-high point production was 56 against Cumberland County. ... Bradley Central, which lost the District 5-AAA championship to McMinn County Friday night, had recorded back-to-back shutouts going into that game. The Bears' season-high offensive output was 52 against Soddy-Daisy and the most scored on them was 45 by Baylor, the No. 1 seed in the Division II-AA playoffs.
Playoffs: This year marks Bradley's eighth trip to the postseason and only the second time the Bears have gone in back-to-back years. They were 1-1 last year, thumping Coffee County before losing 28-26 to Oak Ridge. Bradley has an 8-6 playoff record. Their biggest playoff win was 42 points (42-0) against McMinn County, the team that just cost them the District 5-AAA championship. ... Cookeville was in the playoffs a year ago, losing to Oak Ridge 24-21 before Oak Ridge ousted Bradley. The Cavaliers' deepest drive in the playoffs is the quarterfinals, which they made in 2004 and 2005. They have never played a Chattanooga area team in the postseason.
They have to go: It's out of the way mileage-wise but the most worry-free trip would be to drive the 142 miles going up I75 North to I40 West.
Oak Ridge (7-3) at McMinn County (8-2)
Nicknames: Wildcats, Cherokees
Coaches: Oak Ridge's Scott Blade, McMinn's Bo Cagle
The season: McMinn went through the district undefeated, its two losses coming in the first half of the season to Division II-AA's McCallie (56-34) and Farragut (24-14). Since the loss to Farragut the Cherokees have won five in a row. McMinn has been fairly consistent in its wins, scoring mostly in the 30s except for a 44-point outburst against Soddy-Daisy. ... Oak Ridge suffered losses to Farragut (28-21), Powell and Maryville and also has won five in a row. Powell and Maryville finished unbeaten and Farragut was 8-2.
Playoffs: McMinn fell apart and missed the playoffs last year after back-to-back appearances in 2008 and 2009. The Cherokees and Wildcats, quite recently region opponents, have met twice previously in the postseason, most recently in a 2009 first-round game, a 48-0 McMinn victory. The Cherokees have a 12-16 playoff record and advanced to the semifinals in 1975 before losing 28-14 to the Wildcats. Oak Ridge has been to several semifinals and subsequent state championship games, last getting to the final in 2005 when it lost to Ravenwood. This will be their third consecutive postseason trip and their 85th postseason game. They have a 59-25 record. Over the years they have played Baylor, Bradley and McMinn County in the playoffs.
Shelbyville Central (7-3) at Ooltewah (7-3)
Nicknames: Golden Eagles, Owls
Coaches: Shelbyville's Jason Hardy, Ooltewah's Shannon Williams
The season: Ooltewah lost to Siegel, surrendering a season-high 57 points, and then had district losses to eventual winner McMinn County (30-26) and runner-up Bradley Central (41-39). The Owls had a season-high explosion in their regular season finale, beating Walker Valley 62-27.
Playoffs: The Owls last made a serious playoff run in 2008 when they reached the semifinals before losing to Oakland. They also reached the semifinals in 2001 and 2006 and have a 13-8 postseason record. They missed the playoffs last year so their last appearance was 2009 when they lost in the first round to Farragut. They have no postseason meetings with the Golden Eagles. ... Shelbyville Central's last postseason game against a Chattanooga area team came in 1996 and resulted in a 26-13 win. They also have a win over Howard, two losses to Cleveland and a loss to McMinn County. This is the third straight year they've made the playoffs. They lost a first-round game to Knox Catholic last year.
Brainerd (5-5) at East Hamilton (6-4)
Nicknames: Panthers, Hurricanes
Coaches: Brainerd's Stanley Jackson, East Hamilton's Ted Gatewood
The season: Brainerd lost to East Hamilton, falling to the Hurricanes 22-13 in Week 5. The only district loss East Hamilton was to East Ridge (23-21) and East Ridge lost in Week 10 to Brainerd (20-14). The Hurricanes gave up 45 in a loss to Ooltewah and 42 in a loss to Bradley Central, both members of District 5-AAA, and scored a season-high 42 last week against Howard to clinch their first district championship.
Playoffs: A three-year-old school, East Hamilton has no playoff history. Brainerd missed the playoffs last year but made it in 2009, beating Claiborne County by six before giving Greeneville a struggle before falling (38-22). Brainerd has not played a local team in the playoffs since a 1990 loss to Rhea County.
Red Bank (7-3) at Sequoyah (5-5)
Nicknames: Lions, Chiefs
Coaches: Red Bank's Tim Daniels, Sequoyah's Bill Satterfield
The season: Red Bank won its first four before getting manhandled by Cleveland ((41-6). They then won three but enter the playoffs with back-to-back losses to East Hamilton and Tyner, District 6-AA's top two teams. Their biggest night offensively was 48 points against winless Howard in Week 7. ... Sequoyah lost to Chattanooga area teams Meigs County (26-6) and Polk County (41-7) and struggled through a three-game losing streak Weeks 7-9 before beating Sweetwater 14-6 last week.
Playoffs: The Lions are no strangers to the playoffs, having made it 10 times now this century, winning a state title in 2000 and winning at least one game eight years. They have now, however, played a first-round game on the road in Daniels' era, which dates to the 2002 season. ... Sequoyah was in the playoffs last year but hadn't been previously since 2003. The Chiefs actually haven't won a playoff game since winning two in 1999 when they reached the quarterfinals. Sequoyah has never played a Chattanooga area team in the postseason.
They have to go: 85 miles and the easiest route looks to be going up I75 North to Sweetwater and taking a right to Madisonville.
Notre Dame (5-5) at Marshall County (7-3)
Nicknames: Fighting Irish, Tigers
Coaches: Notre Dame's Josh Sellers, Marshall County's Tom Turchetta
The season: The Irish struggled and did not win a single district game. They scored 61 points in the season opener and then later gave up 61 (to eventual district champion Bledsoe County). As weak as their defense has been, it did record shutouts against Whitwell and Taft Youth Center.
Playoffs: The Irish last made the playoffs in 2006 and their last playoff win came in 2005, the year they reached the semifinals before losing to Livingston Academy. The Irish and Tigers have never met in the postseason. ... Marshall County has a playoff record of 17-25 and this year marks their 27th postseason showing. They were in the playoffs last year, losing in the first round to Maplewood (35-2) and last winning a game in 2007, 21-14 over Jackson South Side.
They have to go: 129 miles via I24 West to Manchester and head west.
Meigs County (5-5) at Bledsoe County (9-1)
Nicknames: Tigers, Warriors
Coaches: Meigs' Ricky Holliday, Bledsoe County's Jason Reel
The season: Bledsoe faltered once, losing to Signal Mountain (48-13) in Pikeville. The Warriors have won seven in a row although the seventh was a shootout (43-42 over Chattanooga Christian). The teams have two common opponents. Bledsoe defeated McMinn Central (24-21) and Sequatchie County (21-17) while Meigs lost to Sequatchie (21-2) and McMinn Central (34-19). Meigs' biggest win was probably its 26-6 win over Class 4A playoff participant Sequoyah (26-6) or its overwhelming shutout over Cannon County (55-0).
Playoffs: This is Bledsoe's third straight postseason year but the Warriors haven't won a playoff game since 1998 when they beat Smith County 13-7. They 34 points they scored last year in a one-point loss to Sequatchie County is an all-time playoff high. Bledsoe has actually won just four of 18 playoff games. ... Old-timers nowadays, members of the 1995 team can talk about their run to the state title game, a run that included a 62-26 semifinal win over Alcoa. The Tigers last got to the playoffs in 2007 and their last win came in 2007 against Smith County (20-14).
Tyner (5-5) at Alcoa (6-4)
Nicknames: Rams, Tornadoes
Coaches: Tyner's Wayne Turner, Alcoa's Gary Rankin
The season: Tyner started off slow, losing its first four before getting a win. However the Rams would lose just one more and they clinched their playoff ticket with a 26-14 win over Red Bank last Friday. Among their losses this year are playoff participants McCallie, Tullahoma and East Hamilton. They also lost to Signal Mountain, which would have been among the Class 4A favorites if for not having six wins vacated by TSSAA executive director Bernard Childress. Alcoa has shown a chink in the armor this year, actually losing three games. Before Tyner fans get excited, though, two of those losses were to undefeated Maryville, and 9-1 Greeneville, both title-game favorites. The other loss was to Austin-East.
Playoffs: Alcoa is defending state champion and has won seven straight championships. The teams are familiar, Tyner playing the Tornadoes in the first round of the 2009 playoffs and losing 29-0. The teams also met in the 2005 semifinals with Alcoa winnings 31-14. The Tornadoes have a 78-12 playoff record. Tyner has a string of playoff appearances that dates back to 1994 and the Rams won a state title in 1997. However, they have not won a playoff game since 2007 and have not advanced past the second round since 2005.
They have to go: 102 miles up I75 N to I140 East.
Kingston (7-3) at Polk County (7-3)
Nicknames: Yellowjackets, Wildcats
Coaches: Kingston's Vic King, Polk's Derrick Davis
The season: Polk went through its district unbeaten and its three losses were to Bradley Central, Central and South Pittsburg. Bradley and South Pittsburg are in the playoffs. ... Kingston started the year 5-0, lost to Alcoa and Lenoir City, beat McMinn Central, lost to Christian Academy of Knoxville and then bested Loudon. McMinn Central is the team's only common opponent. Polk beat the Chargers 46-14 and Kingston shut them out 20-0.
Playoffs: This year marks the 11th straight postseason for the Wildcats, who last year advanced to the second round for only the third time since 1988. Polk and Kingston had a first-round pairing in 2009 with Polk winning 9-0. This is Kingston's fourth straight postseason appearance. In addition to Polk over the years the Wildcats have bested local teams McMinn Central, Notre Dame, City, Sequatchie County and Grundy County and have lost to McMinn Central, Marion County and Tyner.
Harpeth (7-3) at Sequatchie County (7-3)
Nicknames: Indians and Indians
Coaches: Harpeth's Doug Loope, Sequatchie's Chad Barger
The season: Harpeth started out 6-0 but then lost back-to-back games to Sycamore and Camden. They actually finished the year losing three of four games with the last loss coming Friday at Cheatham County. They have scored as many as 54 points in a game (also hitting 40-plus on two other occasions) but have held opponents to nine or fewer points only twice. Sequatchie's losses are to playoff teams South Pittsburg and Bledsoe County and two Signal Mountain, which would have been a class 4A factor if not for having to vacate six wins because of an ineligible player. The Indians scored a season-high 64 points against Marion County and gave up 56 to Signal in their final regular season game.
Playoffs: Sequatchie has made the playoffs each of the last three years and advanced last year to the second round with an upset of neighbor Bledsoe County. Harpeth, which has 16 playoff seasons, was out of the postseason last year but went 1-1 in 2009. They have never played a Chattanooga area team in the playoffs.
Grundy County (6-4) at Goodpasture (7-3)
Nicknames: Yellowjackets, Cougars
Coaches: Grundy's Nick Bryant, Goodpasture's David Martin
The season: Goodpasture started the year 0-2 and finished by winning seven of eight including a six-game streak to end the season. The Cougars have scored 40-plus points in each of their last three games. ... Grundy County won four of its last five and three of those wins came against playoff teams. The Yellowjackets don't score a ton of points, averaging in the 20s, but they did managed 49 in a road game at Upperman.
Playoffs: Goodpasture has state titles from 1995, 1999 and 2001 and has been the runner-up to Alcoa four of the last six years. The Cougars have played four local teams over the years including Tyner, Polk County, Meigs County and Sequatchie County. Goodpasture and Grundy played in the first round in 2009 and Goodpasture rallied for a 29-20 win. While Grundy is now in its third straight postseason, the Yellowjackets haven't won a first-round game since 2002.
They have to go: 110 miles via I24 West.
Boyd-Buchanan (9-1) receives bye
Buccaneers will host the Rockwood-Watertown winner.
Lookout Valley (7-3) at Sunbright (7-3)
Nicknames: Yellow Jackets, Tigers
Coaches: Lookout Valley's Tony Webb, Sunbright's Scott Stephens
The season: Lookout Valley enters the playoffs having won four in a row and five of its last six. The Yellowjackets had a 63-point outburst against Whitwell and surrendered a season-high 56 against South Pittsburg. Sunbright also has won five of its last six while scoring 40 or more in four of those wins.
Playoffs: The teams have met once previously with Lookout Valley taking a 25-15 decision in 2000. Lookout Valley was not in the 2010 playoffs. A year ago, Sunbright dropped an opening round game to Copper Basin. Four of their playoff losses have been against South Pittsburg.
They have to go: 125 miles via Highway 27N.
Grace Academy (6-4) at South Pittsburg (8-2)
Nicknames: Golden Eagles, Pirates
Coaches: Grace's Bob Ateca, South Pitt's Vic Grider
The season: Pirates wins this year include 6A Franklin County, 3A Grundy County, Sequatchie County and Polk County and 2A Boyd-Buchanan. They lost early in the year to 4A Signal Mountain and last week to 2A Knoxville Grace, which finished 10-0 but is sitting out the playoffs due to TSSAA sanctions. Of Grace's six wins, only one came against a team with a winning record - Lookout Valley, which also lost to South Pittsburg. The Golden Eagles have put up some impressive numbers including 48 in a loss to Notre Dame and 63 in a win at Marion County.
Playoffs: South Pittsburg is synonymous with playoffs and the Pirates are the division's defending champion. The Pirates are making their 10th straight playoff showing and only once (2004) did they lose a first-round game. They have advanced to at least the quarterbacks each of the last four years and made the championship game in three of those seasons. Grace still has something of a new-school label and has made the playoffs just once, losing to Friendship Christian in 2006.
McCallie (4-5) at Battle Ground Academy (7-3)
Nicknames: Blue Tornado, Wildcats
Coaches: McCallie's Bubba Simmons, BGA's Roc Batten
The season: McCallie and BGA met earlier this year at BGA with the Wildcats taking a 33-21 decision. The Wildcats held opponents to 10 or few points in four of their wins. They lost three of their last five games - to Baylor, Brentwood Academy and Ensworth. McCallie, 1-4 in road games to date, has lost four of last final five including Baylor, BGA, MBA and Brentwood Academy.
Playoffs: The Blue Tornado got a first-round win on the road last year, something it had not done since 2006 when it beat CBHS. The winner of this one plays at Memphis University School.
They have to go: 136.5 miles from I24 West to 840 to I65N.
Receives first-round bye; will host Briarcrest-MBA winner.