In a field of more than 30 teams from all over the country, Anderson County High School was the last team standing at the University of Tennessee’s 7-on-7 Tournament last Thursday.
“We went over there with the expectation to win,” Anderson County athletic director and assistant football coach Gary Terry said. “Our Code Blue 7-on-7 team has done an exceptional job the last four years competing at a high level with teams that are very athletic from all over the nation.”
With Vols’ head coach Josh Heupel and other staff along with players in attendance, Blue certainly showed out despite being surrounded by multiple blue-chip prospects from around the nation.
“Generally, these big universities bring in these teams that have some five-star athletes,” Terry said. “That’s what makes it fun for us. We don’t have any five-star athletes, we have some three-stars and kids that are very completive that love to play the game. Playing these all-star teams and beating them in front of Heupel was special for these kids.”
Code Blue rolled through the competition leading up to the final, putting up an average of 33 points while giving up an average of 15 points, including a 48-0 shutout over in-state foe Bearden in the quarterfinal.
Anderson County’s offense stayed hot while proving time and time again that it could come up with stops on the defensive end. The only time Code Blue’s offense was stopped was in a 22-12 victory over Giles County in the semifinal.
In the final, they went back and forth with Peleton out of Maryland before ultimately coming out on top 35-28.
Code Blue saw a great performance out of its senior quarterback-wide receiver duo Walker Martinez and 3-star recruit Bryson Vowell.
Martinez’s junior campaign ended early due to injury in week five of last season but he showed no signs of rust by hitting tight windows along with being able to make throws deep down the field.
His arm talent along with Vow’s lengthy 6’4 frame proved lethal for defenses at the tournament. Vowell currently has a Big-10 offer from Iowa as well as other Division 1 schools and he certainly showed why on Thursday.
“You don’t have to be a five-star athlete to play five-star football,” Terry said. “If you have a five-star heart and desire, you give yourself an opportunity. Sometimes the five-star athlete will make a play, but I’ll take my chances with these kids.”