Dee Crisp, Jordan Timmons and Eduardo Trevino will take to the field from the Bradley Bears squad. Robert McMahan, Darius Pillow and Tre’Var Moore will carry the banner for the Cleveland Blue Raiders. Tanner Plemmons will suit up on behalf of the Polk County Wildcats.
Walker Valley High School, which sent Tanner Dillard, Colton Morrow and Garrett Moore to the Tennessee-Kentucky Border Bowl, will not send any Mustangs to the Classic.
“Stump On Sports” television host Stump Martin said the event he originated in 2004 at Ridgeland High School has grown to be a popular game.
“The players on these teams know about the Tennessee/Georgia All-star Classic and they want to be in the game,” he said. “We have had players from this game go on to play at major colleges as well as the Southeastern Conference and professional football. The week of practice and the game creates friendships and memories that will never be forgotten.”
Martin said the players in the game are more athletic than ever.
“The players seem to get bigger and faster each year,” Martin said. “But what hasn’t changed is that coaches and players from Southeast Tennessee and Northwest Georgia read and hear about football on the other side of the border all year, and this is an opportunity to prove who plays the game better.”
Boyd-Buchanan head coach Grant Reynolds has been either the head coach or assistant coach for Team Tennessee in many of these Classics. This is the first time Boyd-Buchanan is hosting this game.
“The game, to me, is about relationships,” Reynolds said. “As coaches it’s meaningful to get the opportunity to impact kids’ (lives) even if it’s just for a week. The relationships you build are everlasting.”
Reynolds said he’s honored to host the game at Boyd-Buchanan.
“We’re excited about putting on a quality event,” he said.
East Ridge head coach Tracy Malone got the call to serve as head coach of Team Tennessee.
He said it’s a “tremendous honor” to be selected to be the head coach in this game.
“I’m very excited to be a part of such a great event,” said the former McMinn County and Tennessee Wesleyan football player. “I expect this year’s game to be extremely competitive. I’m grateful to the 10 men who have volunteered their time to coach in this game with me. It’s truly all about the kids and the assistant coaches.”
Malone said after an overwhelming response from players and coaches in the 14 counties the team is selected from in Southeast Tennessee, he couldn’t be more proud of the group he’s assembled.
“We have talented quarterbacks, a solid stable of running backs and an exciting group of wide receivers,” Malone said. “But I believe the offensive line is as good, if not better, than last year’s (All-star Classic) group, and that’s saying a lot.”
Malone said the Team Tennessee defensive squad he’s helped put together offers “speed all over the field.”
“Our secondary is a definite strength for Team Tennessee,” he said. “And I have all the faith in the world in our kicker/punter Tad Whitaker (East Ridge). This should be a great game.”
LaFayette head coach Chad Fisher has been selected to lead Team Georgia.
“It’s an honor to be selected as Team Georgia head coach,” Fisher said. “I’ve been an assistant twice and now being the head coach is a great honor.”
Fisher said the Team Georgia All-star Classic coaching staff has put together a “very athletic” squad.
“Our defensive line is going to be loaded with top talent,” Fisher said. “And our skill position players are extremely athletic. I believe we have put together a very athletic and competitive team.”
Tennessee holds a 7-3 advantage in the series. Tennessee utilized strong performances from the Lookout Valley duo of MVP Van Scribner and Tennessee Player of the Game Jamal Jones to defeat Georgia 10-7 at McCallie last June.