Ooltewah preparing to play in 6A

The Ooltewah Owls will lean heavily on playmaker Sincere Quinn in 2017. Photo: WTVC

The TSSAA reclassified several area high school football programs this year.

Ooltewah was one of the schools impacted.

The Owls moved up from 5A to 6A.

That means they'll play schools with larger population and usually more players on their teams.

However, the Owls usually dress out 85 to 90 players.

Coach Mac Bryan said depth means even more in 6A.

They lost starting quarterback Colin Thurman and workhorse tailback Cameron Turner to graduation.

But dynamic playmakers Tylan Cargle and Sincere Quinn are back.

Quinn will play a tremendous role this season. Coach Bryan elaborated, "Both are very talented. Sincere did a great job last year. He only probably averaged 10 or 11 carries a game and gained 1,100 yards, so he's a very explosive player."


Something new this year for the Owls - a brand new weight room, courtesy of the boosters.

It will come in handy with the move up to 6A.

The shift puts Bradley Central, Blount County and perennial powerhouse Maryville on the schedule. "It's just a question of can you hold up from a depth standpoint now doing that every week? That's going to be a concern," Bryan said.

The coach, a former offensive lineman himself at Appalachian State, feels good about his o-line.

Five seniors will lead the way. "We got five guys back who've been in the system the whole time who are strong, got the age on them, the experience. So, we feel pretty good about the offensive line right now."

Wide receivers Andrew Manning and Cam Chambers are back.

Getting the ball to them will be dual threat quarterback Kyrell Sanford.

The coach said he's very mobile and possesses another important quality. "Very intelligent quarterback, feel good about him. He'll be the first junior we've started since I've been here. It'll be my fifth year. We've always started a senior quarterback," Bryan noted.

Ooltewah has won 40 games in the past four years.

Expectations are high again this season.

Practice resumes on July 24th.

Come August, NewsChannel 9 will preview more teams.

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