“We need 16-17,000 fans to come out and cheer and yell and support this team on Saturday night.”
-- UTC head football coach Russ Huesman.
It’s a football fans dream.
Two great games … two nights … same stadium … large crowds.
Friday Night - 7 :30 p.m. ... McCallie vs. Baylor
It’s bragging rights for a year - for the players, maybe a lifetime – as close to 10,000 fans will be dressed in blue or red as McCallie hosts Baylor at Finley Stadium.
The oldest prep football rivalry in the state - first game played in 1905 – shows Baylor leading 42-35-3 and the Red Raiders have won the last four games.
Tickets- $10 .. Pavilion ticket windows open at 5 p.m. ... stadium ticket windows open at 6 p.m.
Saturday Night – 6 p.m. … UTC vs. Appalachian State
The visiting Mountaineers have won the last seven games in the series and UTC coach Russ Huesman has never lost a Homecoming game (10-0-1) as a player or a head coach.
Both teams see this one as a must win.
The Mocs have a tough three-game Southern Conference stretch with road games at league-leading The Citadel (Sept.29) and at Furman (Oct. 13) after the Appalachian State game.
Big Weekend For Finley Stadium Staff: “This is our biggest weekend of the year as we hope for more than 25,000 fans for two nights,” said Merrill Eckstein, Finley Stadium executive director.
From John Graham and his Phipps Cleaning Company to Bob Burchfield (Bob Burchfield Food Services) who handles catering for the press box, Stadium Club and the suites and Randy Carpenter (Family Concessions LLC) who runs the stadium concessions, it an important football weekend financially for everyone involved.
Finley Clean-up: Graham will use a 15 member crew to clean Finley Stadium, the concourse, the suites and bathrooms after both games .. he estimates his crew will work until 5 a.m. Saturday morning cleaning up after the McCallie game and until approx. 7 a.m. Sunday morning after the UTC-App. State game ... and there are youth soccer matches at Finley on Sunday.
100th Anniversary: IBEW - International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers - local 175 are celebrating their 100th anniversary and are a UTC game sponsor.
History Repeats Itself – Same Teams … Same Stadium
Oct. 7, 1978 – Football Doubleheader: Chamberlain Field hosted a rare day-night football doubleheader 34 years ago.
2 p.m. – Baylor 21, McCallie 14 … It was Homecoming and both teams entered the game with perfect records … Baylor led 21-0 in the fourth quarter, but McCallie scored twice to pull within a touchdown and had the ball late, but couldn’t score.
Approximately three hours later …
7:30 p.m. – UTC 72, Appalachian State 14 … Mocs senior quarterback Tony Merendino had the game of his life on the Chamberlain Field turf as he rushed for 134 yards and three touchdowns and completed eight of 11 passes for 240 yards and one score.
Two QBs - The Mocs made good use of two quarterbacks that year – sound familiar ?? – as junior Dennis Berkery - who had rallied UTC to a 27-23 road win at Marshall University two weeks prior - completed three passes for 91 yards and one touchdown against the Mountaineers.
Russ Huesman was a freshman defensive back for the Mocs in 1978 and the team went on to capture the second of three straight Southern Conference championships that year under coach Joe Morrison.
Will history repeat itself this weekend? Baylor fans hope so as do UTC supporters.
Key High School Football Games (all 7:30 p.m. EDT starts unless noted otherwise)
McCallie (2-2, 1-2) vs. Baylor (3-2), 1-2) .. important D-II region game and for bragging rights
Signal Mountain (2-3) at South Pittsburg (4-0) (8 p.m.) .. The visiting Eagles has won the last two meetings in this short, but strong rivalry ... South Pitt is a tough place for visiting teams
Cedartown (3-0) at Ridgeland (1-1) ... Cedartown is led by running back Nick Chubb, while Ridgeland is led by safety Vonn Bell ... Approximately 25 players from the 1962 state championship Rossville team will be introduced at 6:45 p.m. ... The '62 Bulldogs beat Cedartown twice that year, including 21-19 in the region finals.
Greater Atlanta Christian at Howard (1-3) ... This is the first home game of the season for Howard ... the Hustlin' Tigers gave coach Michael Calloway his first career victory last week against Central ... members of the '62 state championship Howard team will be honored at the game.
DCA (2-2) at Boyd-Buchanan (5-0) ... The host Bucs beat DCA last year on the way to winning their first seven games.
Notre Dame (3-1) at Lookout Valley (4-1) ... Lookout Valley can move to 5-1 for the first time since 2007 ... The Irish can move to 4-1 for the first time since 2005 when they finished 13-1.
contact B.B. Branton at email@example.com