The Cougars 2020 football season came to a close last night as Campbell County hosted the state’s best 5A football squad, the West High Rebels.

The Rebels flexed that top ranked muscle early and often as they built a large lead against a Cougar squad down a large number of senior starters.

Campbell County fought the entire game after falling behind multiple touchdowns in the first quarter and by over 40 before the half ended. Hunter White found Westly Wallen for a touchdown in the 4th, and he hit Devon Jones over the middle for another the next drive after a great catch on a deep ball by senior Gavin Newman.

The final score of 44-13 was actually a defense letdown for the Rebels, who have the best defense in the state outside of Alcoa. 6A power Farragut was only able to get 7 points up vs West and region runner up Oak Ridge also only scored 7. 6A Jefferson County, Karns, and Clinton only combined to get 3 points on the board vs the Rebels.

So in context of just how good West is, the 13 points against the Rebels without the three top receivers (Mason Shanks had also exited early with an injury) and without starting running back C.J. Allen was an impressive showing for the Cougar offense, 8 of the 11 on the field for those drives and at times 9 of the 11, will be back for the 2021 season. By then the Cougars will have new turf, there will hopefully be less of a distracting off season and there will be a load of returning starters.

All this to face what should be a reshuffled region, with Fulton leaving the 5A classification entirely. The current region featured 3 teams ranked in the top 5 in Tennessee at some point this season. The Cougars also played a Carter team that was ranked in the top 10 in the state at times. It was one of the toughest slates the Cougars ever had to face.

C.J Allen tied a school touchdown record in only 9 games. Will Lester managed to get to 100 tackles on the season after recording 10 last night. Very impressive from junior and a sophomore.

2021 should be a very good year for Campbell County, especially if TSSAA gives a more balanced slate after realignment. When they last shuffled the region Campbell County was placed in the very tough 7 team region it currently occupies while the neighboring district only had 5 teams. We should know the new regional alignments in the next 10 days.