NASHVILLE, Tenn. – The Tennessee Titans announced eight finalists for the team's annual High School Coach of the Year award. The award recognizes high school football coaches who continuously demonstrate excellence in their profession, dedication to their football programs and their focus on the safety and character of their players. Their team's regular and postseason performance is also taken into consideration.
Finalists are as follows:
· Caine Ballard (14-0): Greeneville High School, Greeneville
· Darren Bowling (12-2): Union City High School, Union City
· Anthony Crabtree (14-0): Beech High School, Hendersonville
· Charles Fant (11-1): Notre Dame High School, Chattanooga
· Derek Hunt (13-1): Maryville High School, Maryville
· Kevin Locastro (12-0): Lausanne Collegiate School, Memphis
· Cody White (11-0): Brentwood Academy, Brentwood
· Eddie Woods (13-1): Cane Ridge High School, Antioch
The High School Coach of the Year award winner will be announced following the conclusion of the 2017 BlueCross Bowl, and will receive a grant in the amount of $2,000 to benefit his football program, as well as an all-expense paid trip to the 2018 Pro Bowl in Orlando, FL.
The team's award winner automatically qualifies for the Don Shula NFL High School Coach of the Year award, honoring high school football coaches that display the integrity, achievement and leadership exemplified by the coach with the most wins in NFL history, Don Shula. The Don Shula NFL High School Coach of the Year award winner – announced in January – receives $10,000 and his high school football program is awarded $15,000.
The Titans' High School Coach of the Year award is an extension of the High School Game of the Week and Coach of the Week programs. Each Coach of the Week (10 total) received a grant from the Tennessee Titans in the amount of $1,000 to benefit his school's football program. All 11 award winners – 10 Coach of the Week winners and the Coach of the Year – will be recognized during the Titans vs. Jaguars game on Sunday, Dec. 31.
Through the Coach of the Week program, the Titans have donated more than $200,000 in grant funding to high school football programs across the state.
For more information on the High School Game of the Week and Coach of the Week program, or a list of Coach of the Week winners, visit www.titansonline.com/gameoftheweek.