Knox County teams have 25-16 record in playoff finals

  By Steve Williams The Tennessee Secondary School Athletic Association has crowned 255 state champions in football since 1969. Twenty-five of those have been high school teams in Knox County. On average, that would be about one state champion every two years for the Knoxville area. Winning a state championship is pretty rare. Knoxville and […]

From 12 playoff qualifiers in 1969 to 231 this year

Editor’s Note: When the Tennessee Secondary School Athletic Association started its football classification system in the fall of 1969, The Knoxville Focus’ Steve Williams was a senior at Clinton High School and covering the Clinton Dragons for his hometown newspaper, The Clinton Courier-News. This is his first of a series of columns on the first […]

Longtime workers help make Game Days happen

He knows the score PHOTO BY DANNY DUNLAP Wade Mitchell has operated the game clock and scoreboard at Webb School football games for 36 years.

Longtime workers help make Game Days happen

  By Steve Williams High school football teams usually have only five home games during the regular season each year, so it is a special occasion each time one is on the schedule. A lot of folks behind the scenes help make it happen, too! You got to have a chain crew on the sidelines […]

This 26-point loss provides hope instead of despair

By Steve Williams Tennessee’s football team didn’t get a win at Georgia, but it gave its fans hope. My how this 26-point loss felt so much better than the 26-point loss to Florida the week before. It inspired me to look at the remainder of the season in a different light. What if I told […]

The fallout from Vols’ awful loss to Florida

  By Steve Williams This was the game that would give us a clue on how the 2018 football season might go for Tennessee. The 2-1 Vols had showed promise in a first half comeback against a good West Virginia team in the opener. They started slowly against ETSU but ended up winning big. Their […]

Pruitt may turn Florida series back around

By Steve Williams Well, it’s Florida Week. Sorry if that doesn’t come across with the same passion as I have expressed in the past. There are reasons for that. First and foremost, one Tennessee win over the Gators since 2004 can alter the hopes of even die-hard fans. But I haven’t thrown in the towel. […]

Pruitt needs time, but not my time machine

By Steve Williams I was one of the callers on the Vol Network’s statewide kickoff show prior to Tennessee’s football season opener against West Virginia on Sept. 1. I had been listening to Bob Kesling, Tim Priest and Pat Ryan talk about some of the things new UT head coach Jeremy Pruitt was bringing back […]

First ever UT vs. ETSU game has a lot of local interest

By Steve Williams It’ll be a homecoming of sorts for Randy Sanders and many of his players when East Tennessee State University plays Tennessee this coming Saturday at Neyland Stadium. It will also be the first time ever the Buccaneers and Volunteers have played a football game against each other. I for one am glad […]

It’s about time Tennessee gets physical

By Steve Williams I can’t remember a UT football season I’ve wanted to get here quicker than this one. There are a couple of good reasons why, too. The Vols under Butch Jones hit rock bottom in 2017, losing eight games overall and going winless in SEC play for the first time in school history. […]

Whatta ya say big leagues? Gillispie is ready

By Steve Williams Mick Gillispie, Tennessee Smokies baseball broadcaster since 2007, is on deck for a major league gig. After all, he was selected the Ballpark Digest’s Minor League Broadcaster of the Year for 2017. That’s No. 1 among hundreds of others who do what he does across the country. A tremendous honor! But there’s […]

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