Chattanooga’s three-day prep football jamboree features 21 area teams

Staff file photo / Brainerd's Martels Carter Jr. (4), running for the end zone at Finley Stadium during a jamboree quarter against Bradley Central last August, is among multiple college prospects on the roster for the Panthers this season. The Panthers will again take part in the jamboree at Finley next month.
Staff file photo / Brainerd's Martels Carter Jr. (4), running for the end zone at Finley Stadium during a jamboree quarter against Bradley Central last August, is among multiple college prospects on the roster for the Panthers this season. The Panthers will again take part in the jamboree at Finley next month.

Chattanooga's annual prep football jamboree, presented by BlueCross BlueShield of Tennessee, will once again be played across three days at Finley Stadium.

The 21-team preseason showcase is Aug. 10-12, marking the third year in a row it will be a three-day event.

"The jamboree is such a great tie-in with the BlueCross Bowl," Robin Young, senior vice president of commercial operations and chief marketing officer for BlueCross BlueShield of Tennessee, said in a news release. "All these teams hope to be back in Finley this November for a shot at a state championship in the BlueCross Bowl, and we wish them luck."

The BlueCross Bowl, the TSSAA's three-day state championship event for football, has been held at Finley Stadium the past two years and is set to remain at the Chattanooga venue for at least this season and in 2024.

As for the jamboree, one new aspect will be a full scrimmage to end the Thursday portion of the event as Soddy-Daisy faces Georgia's Ringgold. There will be seven quarters of action Thursday, followed by eight quarters each of the final two days. Admission is $10 each day, with tickets available through each participating school as well as at the gate. Each quarter will be 20 minutes with a running clock, and each team gets one timeout.

The first night will feature last season's TSSAA Class 2A state champion, Tyner, playing in two quarters. The Rams will face Signal Mountain and Sale Creek, which is under the direction of head coach Jason Fitzgerald, who guided Meigs County to consecutive BlueCross Bowl appearances (2019-20) during his nine seasons leading the Tigers before stepping down in February to take over the Panthers.

Friday's matchups will be highlighted by Ooltewah versus Boyd Buchanan — which is coached by the state's career wins leader, Gary Rankin, who enters his second season with the program — as well as Marion County versus Chattanooga Christian — which is now coached by Grant Reynolds, who has guided two previous programs (Boyd Buchanan and Alabama's Madison Academy) to state championship games — and a nightcap in which South Pittsburg faces Silverdale Baptist.

Saturday begins with East Ridge versus Brainerd, which has multiple college prospects, including junior defensive back Martels Carter Jr., who has more than 20 offers from Football Bowl Subdivision programs. That will be followed by Cleveland — and new Blue Raiders head coach Chandler Tygard, who runs one of the fastest-paced offenses in the state — taking on perennial Division II-AAA power McCallie, which has three of the area's top college prospects for the class of 2024 — defensive lineman Carson Gentle, who's committed to Tennessee, quarterback Jay St-Hilaire (Vanderbilt), defensive back/receiver Marcellus Barnes (Virginia Tech) — as well as junior receiver Carson Lawrence (Vanderbilt).

The event ends with two of Hamilton County's top public schools facing off as East Hamilton takes on Red Bank.

Fans are allowed only one clear plastic bag, no larger than 12 inches by 6 inches, or a one-gallon clear resealable plastic storage bag per person. A small clutch purse not exceeding 4.5 inches by 6.5 inches will also be allowed.

No other bags will be allowed inside Finley Stadium, and all bags and purses are subject to search at the gates. Also prohibited will be outside food, snacks and beverages, open umbrellas, stadium seats with arm rests, artificial noisemakers, video cameras (professional cameras with detachable lenses), and weapons of any kind, including pocket knives.

Contact Stephen Hargis at shargis@timesfreepress.com.

  photo  Staff file photo by Robin Rudd / McCallie senior quarterback Jay St-Hilaire has committed to Vanderbilt. The Blue Tornado will take part in Chattanooga's annual prep football jamboree, set for Aug. 10-12 at Finley Stadium.
 
 

JAMBOREE SCHEDULE 2023

At Finley Stadium

Thursday, Aug. 10

Tyner vs. Sale Creek, 6 p.m.

Tyner vs. Signal Mountain, 6:30

Sale Creek vs. Signal Mountain, 7

Soddy-Daisy vs. Ringgold (full scrimmage), 7:30

Friday, Aug. 11

Lookout Valley vs. Hixson, 6

Lookout Valley vs. Boyd Buchanan, 6:30

Chattanooga Christian vs. Hixson, 7

Boyd Buchanan vs. Ooltewah, 7:30

Chattanooga Christian vs. Marion County, 8

South Pittsburg vs. Ooltewah, 8:30

Marion County vs. Silverdale Baptist, 9

South Pittsburg vs. Silverdale Baptist, 9:30

Saturday, Aug. 12

East Ridge vs. Brainerd, 5:30

East Ridge vs. Notre Dame, 6

Cleveland vs. Brainerd, 6:30

Notre Dame vs. McCallie, 7

Cleveland vs. McCallie, 7:30

Central vs. East Hamilton, 8

Central vs. Red Bank, 8:30