NASHVILLE, TN, Oct. 13, 2008 - The Tennessee Titans announced today that Joe Gaddis, head football coach of Henry County High School in Paris, Tenn., has been named the Titans High School Football Coach of the Week for Week Seven. Henry County (7-0) outscored Brighton (6-1) 54-0 in a battle of two of the top teams in 7-4A.
Evenly matched with Henry County and Brighton being ranked No. 2 and No. 4 in the state respectively, both teams entered the contest 6-0 in this battle for supremacy atop the region. Using a strong defense and a balanced passing and rushing attack, the Patriots went up 47-0 at halftime en route to scoring 48 or more points in their fifth consecutive contest and 54 for the second time in 2008.
"This is much deserved award for such a great person," said Henry County High School Principal Lennies McFerren. "The consensus with our parents, administrators and students that they will all tell you about coach Gaddis is, that he cares about our students as individuals first and athletes second and I suppose that is the reason for his successes on the football field."
Through the Titans Foundation, team owner K.S. "Bud" Adams, Jr. will make a $1,000 contribution to the Henry County High School football program in Coach Gaddis' honor.
"High school football enjoys a great tradition in Tennessee," said Adams. "That tradition is based not only on the outstanding quality of play but on the devotion of their coaches who continue to develop high school football players into young men of strong character. I'm very pleased to underwrite this program that recognizes the efforts of so many talented high school coaches across the state!"
Coach Gaddis will be the team's guest at the Titans vs. Pittsburgh Steelers game on December 21st when the team honors all 2008 Coach of the Week winners and announces the winner of the 2008 Coach of the Year! Coach Gaddis is now eligible for the Tennessee Titans Coach of the Year award and Adams will make an additional $2,000 grant to the Titans Coach of the Year winner on that date.
Also receiving strong consideration in this week's poll was Mark Matykiewicz of Centennial High School. Playing in arguably one of the toughest regions in the state, Centennial beat powerhouse Ravenwood 44-28 to go to 6-2. Robbie Norris of Sullivan North who led his team to important 22-14 win over Elizabethton after falling behind 14-0 on Elizabethton first two plays from scrimmage and Kenny Parker of Cascade High School whose club defeated Eagleville 31-28 to remain defeated in 2008.
Now in its 11th season, the Adams has awarded more than $112,000 from the Titans Foundation to football programs across the state in honor of the Coach of the Week winners.
"High school football coaches can play a role in the lives of their players that will have lasting results," said NFL director of football operations Gene Washington. "A competitive spirit, good sportsmanship and character development are some of the issues confronted on a daily basis by football coaches. We are thankful for the many coaches around the country who assume such a demanding role."
The criterion for selection includes the coach's impact on his team, school and community. A statewide media panel votes each week to determine the weekly winner. All high school football coaches in Tennessee, regardless of their school's size, league, or division, are eligible to be selected each week. The program is designed to recognize high school coaches who transform, through their hard work and dedication, student-athletes into the best possible football players and citizens in their community.