McCalllie Football: Two Undefeated Teams From the 1950s

McCallie Hosts Father Ryan Friday at Spears Stadium

Thursday, October 26, 2017 - by B.B Branton

“Attending McCallie my senior year of high school was the best thing that ever happened to me after my old high school in Knoxville closed after my junior year. I learned so much and was challenged academically and in other areas of life.”

Tommy Ayres, McCallie class of 1952


McCallie hosts Father Ryan Friday in D-II prep football as both teams close out the regular season and seniors from two undefeated Blue Tornado teams in the 1950s - fall of 1951 (8-0-1) and fall of 1956 (8-0-1) - take part in class reunions this weekend.

 Members of the classes of 1952 and 1957 are among those reunion classes taking part in the Golden M Society Weekend for classes 50 years and older.

The 2001 football squad was 12-0-0 and state champs as the seniors celebrated their 15th class reunion (2002) two weeks ago during Reunion Weekend.

McCallie has had eight unbeaten football teams, three of which were unbeaten and untied.

Unbeaten, Untied (3) – 1921, 1936, 2001

Unbeaten, One or Two Ties (5) – 1905, 1933, 1938, 1951, 1956

1951 - Record: 8-0-1

Mid-South Champions

Coach: John Nardo

Captain: George Morris; Alternate Captain, Buddy Browder

Games: Notre Dame (18-6), SMA (52-6), CMA (32-0), City (42-13), Murfreesboro Central (32-7), KMI (31-7), GMA (13-13), TMI (56-0) and Darlington (27-7)

Scoring: McCallie (303), Opponents (59)

Pts. Per Game: McCallie (33.5), Opponents (6.5)

Shutouts: 2

Notes: McCallie defeated 1950 Tennessee state champions Murfreesboro Central, 32-7, in-town rivals Notre Dame (18-6) and City HS (42-13) and Kentucky Military Institute, 31-7, avenging a loss from 1950 … McCallie trailed in only one game in 1951 that being in the 13-13 tie at Georgia Military Academy.

City Scoring Champion: Cecil Davis (91 points)

All-City (first team): Larry Bradford, Buddy Browder, Cecil Davis, Hugh Eichelberger, Stan Worlen

All-Mid-South: Buddy Browder, Cecil Davis, Hugh Eichelberger, Stan Worlen

All-South: Hugh Eichelberger, Cecil Davis (honorable mention)

All-American: Hugh Eichelberger

College Football Scholarships:

Ga. Tech: Charlie Huff, Larry Bradford, Mike McAdams, Stan Worlen, Gene Robbins, Cecil Davis

Alabama: Thornton Cole

Auburn: George Morris

Clemson: Hugh Eichelberger

North Carolina: Ed Laughlin

Tennessee: Tommy Ayres

Buddy Browder: Vanderbilt

This Weekend: Classmate Carter Smith Jr, will receive an Alumni Achievement Award.during the Golden M Society luncheon on Saturday.


1956 - Record: 8-0-1

Mid-South Champions

Coach: Harry “Sac” Milligan

Co-Captains: Steve Stephenson, Jimmy Sims

Games: Rossville (13-7), GMA (6-0), CMA (14-13), Commercial High (Savannah, Ga. - 28-20), City (0-0), Castle Heights (13-7), Millersburg Military Institute (34-0), TMI (39-7), Darlington (26-19)

Homecoming: McCallie beat Castle Heights, 13-7

Homecoming Queen: Janice Haley

Patrons Day Game: McCallie beat Millersburg, 34-0

Scoring: McCallie (173), Opponents (73)

Pts. Per Game: McCallie (19.2), Opponents (8.1)

Shutouts: 3

All-City (first team): Dan Boone, Jimmy Sims, Steve Stephenson

All-Mid-South (first team): Dan Boone, Dave Milligan, Jimmy Sims, Steve Stephenson

First Year Coach: Harry “Sac” Milligan was in his first year as McCallie head coach in 1956… He was head coach at Darlington (Rome, Ga.) and Richmond Academy (Augusta, Ga.) before coming to McCallie in the fall of 1956 … In an 11-year stretch (1946-1956) he was 76-23-3 (68-23-3 in 10 seasons in Georgia and 8-0-1 at McCallie) with a Georgia 2A state championship in 1951 at Richmond Academy, three state semifinal appearances (1950-52-55), an undefeated season at Darlington (8-0-1) in 1946 and an unbeaten Mid-South title at McCallie in 1956 …. Coach Milligan received McCallie’s highest award the Grayson Medal as a senior in 1927.

Remembering a Classmate: Joe Moss, the 1957 class president, member of the Senate and Keo Kio (senior leadership) and Vice President YMCA, died in 1999 and several of his classmates have a “Joe Moss Weekend” each April in Asheville, N.C.

“Joe was a great classmate and teammate so we meet in Asheville each spring, play golf and have a couple of meals together, reminisce about our time at McCallie and, of course, talk about what Joe meant to all of us.,” said Dave Milligan who attended McCallie as a senior when his dad, football coach Harry Milligan left Richmond Academy (Augusta, Ga.) to return to McCallie in the summer of 1951.

College Football:

Centre College: Upshur Higginbotham

Ga. Tech/Southern Miss: Dave Milligan

Ga. Tech/Tenn. Tech: Jimmy Sims

Ga. Tech: Bob Dobbins

Sewanee: Fred Wunderlich

Tenn. Tech: Don Welch

Vanderbilt: Dan Boone

This Weekend: Classmates Bob Killebrew and Sam Dougherty will receive Alumni Achievemen Awards during the Golden M Society Luncheon on Saturday.

Also, Henry Henegar will receive the Distinguished Alumnus Award

Talented teenagers from football teams long ago etched their names in McCallie football history as unbeaten. The 1957 seniors were seventh graders in the fall of 1951 hoping for and later producing an unbeaten season of their own.

This Weekend, members of these two classes will mix and mingle with other alums and current McCallie faculty and staff during various Golden M Society activities as the stories of great team wins will be re-told, but more important than victories are the McCallie brotherhood and lifelong friendships which started in high school on the ridge or even before.

“On McCallie, On McCallie …  Honor, Truth and Duty”


contact B.B. Branton at

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