The Kentucky-Tennessee Border Bowl is moving to Sevierville in 2017.
For the past nine years the University of the Cumberlands’ James H. Taylor II Stadium has been the site of the annual all-star high school football game, but Border Bowl X will feature a change of scenery. This year’s game is being played at Sevier County High School, home of the Smoky Bears, with practices taking place at the state-of-the-art Rocky Top Sports World facility in Gatlinburg.
Williamsburg’s Jerry Herron is serving as head coach for this year’s Kentucky All-Stars team. “I’m honored to represent the state of Kentucky,” he said. “I have a great staff helping me this year. We’ve spent a lot of time watching film, and picking our roster. We will feature a lot of guys who are going to be playing in college, and more who are hoping to go on, so we look to be very competitive.”
Coach Herron’s roster of Kentucky All-Stars will feature some familiar faces, with five coverage area athletes getting invitations to participate in Border Bowl X. Making the trip south will be Corbin linebacker Dylan Brock, Corbin lineman Jacob Lovett, Whitley County lineman Dawson Powers, Whitley County linebacker Jacob Paul and Williamsburg wide receiver Hagen Hawn. The Kentucky All-Stars will also feature players from Southwestern, Harlan, Knox Central, Pineville, Pulaski County and Somerset High Schools.
“I’m excited to have these local players in the game,” said Herron. “For us to be able to put these kids in a bowl game like this really says a lot about our area.”
As for the game being moved across the border this year, Herron has mixed emotions. He said that he is looking forward to traveling to Gatlinburg, and he is thrilled about the facilities that will be made available to his team, but he did admit that he hates to see this yearly event leave his hometown of Williamsburg. In the end, however, he remains mostly enthusiastic and optimistic about the future of the Border Bowl as it celebrates a decade of existence in 2017.
Teams and coaches will report next Wednesday, January 18. A total of six practice sessions are scheduled to take place between Wednesday evening and Friday morning. On Friday evening, a banquet has been scheduled that will feature special guest Antone Davis, who lettered as an offensive lineman at the University of Tennessee from 1987-90. Davis went on to spend seven years in the NFL, first as a member of the Philadelphia Eagles, and then as an Atlanta Falcon.
Border Bowl X will kick off at Sevier County High School at 2:05 p.m. Saturday, January 21. If you are unable to be there for the game in person, you can still watch it on television on ESPN 3, or by using the ESPN app on your mobile device.
For more information on the 2017 Border Bowl, including full rosters for players and coaches, a detailed itinerary, links to the Sevier County High School and Rocky Top Sports World websites, a detailed bio on Antone Davis and much more, please visit kytnborderbowl.com.