High School Football Coaches Expect an Adventure on Road Trips


With the high school football season just around the corner, coaches know fun times lie ahead when they crank up the bus for road trips.
Said Walker Valley coach Glen Ryan-“It’s an adventure every time you go on the road in high school.”
And the adventure usually involves the team bus.
Said Cleveland’s Scott Cummings-“We lost 7-0 in the state semifinals. On the way back one of our coaches buses completely broke down. It delayed us getting home for about three hours. That would definitely be considered the trip from hell.”
And remember, teams usually don’t ride charter buses.
Said Walker Valley coach Justin Barnes-“We take a school bus everywhere we go. Most of those don’t have air conditioner unless it’s the 280. Roll the windows down and go 80.”
Once you get off the bus, you typically find a cramped or maybe locked visitor’s locker room.
Said Ryan-“There are a few where you are literally in just a small pea locker room. You dress your starters, and then you dress your non-starters.”
Added McMinn Co’s Bo Cagle-“It was either 2008 or 2009, we go to Rhea County. The captains are going out. I look out there, and our quarterback is a captain. I got on the headset and said, where is Sigh at? I don’t know. They started looking around. They said, we can’t find him. Well Rhea County when you play them, after you come out they go lock the locker room behind you. Well, they’ve locked him in the locker room. When we get the ball, we finally saw him coming. They’ve got him locked in the locker room. He finally comes running. We’re on offense. He comes running straight from the end zone onto the field to run the first play on offense.”
Overnight trips can also be an experience.
Said Rhea Co coach Mark Pemberton-“The thing I don’t like is if you have to go and stay overnight. You’re nervous as a cat about the kids at night and stuff. Our coaches are patrolling all night. I don’t like the overnight trips. Let’s say that.”
Said Ryan-“It’s always an experience, but it’s memories these guys will take with them. That’s what they talk about. Hey, you remember when we went on the road here or there.”

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Rick Nyman grew up in Anniston, Alabama and attended the University of Alabama. His television career started at WJSU-TV in Anniston where he had the opportunity to cover SEC football with Alabama and Auburn. Anniston is just 20 minutes from the Talladega Speedway, so NASCAR was a big part of his sports coverage. Due to this he was able to interview Davey Allison, Dale Earnhardt, Jeff Gordon, and several other top-name NASCAR drivers. Rick's next television job was in Savannah, Georgia, where he covered basketball player Kwame Brown (now with the Washington Wizards), who later became the first ever high school player selected as the top pick in the NBA draft. He covered the PGA Tour's annual swing thru Hilton Head and also had the opportunity of covering the Atlanta Falcons Super Bowl appearance in 1999 in Miami. Rick especially enjoys all the atmosphere, tradition and drama of college football. He also likes profiling sports personalities and learning what drives them both on and off the field. If he's not covering sports, he's either watching Seinfield or David Letterman, playing golf, reading, or working out. What he enjoys about Chattanooga is the passion people have for sports. The mountainous region of Chattanooga reminds him of his hometown of Anniston, which also has big, beautiful trees and plenty of hills. You can contact Rick at rnyman@wdef.com.