Whitwell community coming together to fund championship rings

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WHITWELL, Tenn. (WDEF) — It’s like Drake says, cause they’ve got a really big team and they need some really nice rings.

The citizens of Whitwell are making that happen for the class A football state champions.

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Time stood still for Whitwell fans in Cookeville Saturday as the final seconds ticked off the state championship clock.

“They’re still talking about it. It’s Wednesday, and they’re still talking about it. It’s the greatest thing I can think of that’s happened positively for this town,” Raceway’s Darin Rogers said.

Whitwell, undefeated for the first time in history. For the small town of 17-hundred, the title win means way more than a football game — proven as the community rallies together to get every football player a state championship ring.



“That’s what we do as a community. We all come together,” Citzens Tri-County Bank’s Cindy Woods said. “This has been a long time coming. Never in the history of Whitwell high school. And so this is something we want to do to give these boys. They’ve put so much pride back into this valley, and we want to try to make sure they all get a ring.”

And the donations have been pouring in. Jesse’s Grill in Kimball is donating the first ring, no matter the cost. Raceway collected 100 dollars in change alone Tuesday. And First Volunteer Bank is trading a state championship shirt for a dollar.

“When we say a dollar, everybody’s very surprised. And usually we get more than a dollar. We’ve had $250. We’ve had hundreds,” Kay Smith of First Volunteer Bank said.

The bank had about $400 in donations in 30 minutes.

“I hope it’s as good as they can possibly get. If it was up to me, it would be like a Superbowl ring for all I care,” Rogers said.

Citizen’s Tri-County Bank also has an account solely for donations.

“If we can buy them all a ring, that’s what we want to do,” Smith said.

Tennessee American Water Spokeswoman Daphne Kirskey tells me the company will also be donating money. If you would like to add to the ring fund, you can donate here.