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Off the Field – Has the fantasy ended?

By Curtis Carden

Schedule changes for Unicoi County High School and Unicoi County Middle School athletics need to be submitted by coaches to [email protected] or by contacting The Erwin Record at 743-4112 at earliest convenience so the public, along with the sports department, is made aware of changes in a print edition or online.

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Remember that moment when you reigned supreme in the fantasy football league? Took a trial run with DraftKings? That could soon be reaching its end in Tennessee

Tennessee Attorney General Herbert Slatery issued an opinion on Thursday, April 7, stating that “all” fantasy sports games are “illegal.”

While opinions issued by the attorney general are not law, they typically lead to changes in the law. Even with the recent remarks from Slatery, citizens in the state have the opportunity to keep fantasy sports from becoming illegal, the Tennessee State Legislature has the power to pass House Bill 2105 for consumer protection.

The bill, which has already passed through the State Senate, creates an advisory task force to review online simulated competitions, including, but not limited to, online fantasy football, and recommend any necessary statutory revisions to the consumer protection laws that should be made to protect consumers when paying to participate in an online simulated competition. The bill would keep fantasy sports of all kinds legal in Tennessee.

According to, more than one million Tennessee residents play fantasy sports. The site also reports that 55 million Americans have played fantasy sports. A variety of online entities, including ESPN and Yahoo offer free leagues for fantasy sports; however, leagues involving a cash payout for playing a game involving chance constitutes gambling, according to Slatery. This is considered illegal gambling by the state without the proper legislation in place.

Anyone interested in making their voices heard on the issue are encouraged to contact their state representative.

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Unicoi County High School basketball fans will see a new head coach at the helm during the Lady Blue Devils and Lady Cyclones clashes during the 2016-2017 season.

Len Dugger, who led the Lady Cyclones to four consecutive TSSAA state tournament appearances and coached for more than 20 years at Elizabethton High School, resigned as head coach of the girls’ basketball team on Friday, April 8, during a team meeting, according to The resignation went into effect immediately.

The resignation comes off the heels of the Elizabethton girls’ basketball program receiving sanctions from the TSSAA after a potential recruiting violation. The team will go through a postseason probation period, according to a letter provided by the TSSAA.

A coaching search was still underway for the position after The Erwin Record’s press deadline. Sources have reported that potential candidates for the position include assistant Elizabethton coach Todd Whittemore and T.A. Dugger Middle School basketball coach Matt Fox.

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Appalachian Championship Wrestling is coming to the Erwin National Guard Armory on Saturday, April 23. Doors open at 6:30 p.m. with bell time set for 7 p.m.

Ticket prices for the event are set at $5, while children six years of age and under and military members with ID receive free admission.

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Does the punishment always fit the crime?

Former University of Tennessee men’s basketball head coach Donnie Tyndall received a 10-year penalty from the NCAA following up an investigation during his time with Southern Mississippi.

Any infractures need to be taken seriously, but it’s hard to believe that Tyndall can receive that type of punishment, while Syracuse and North Carolina men’s teams, both coming off deep runs in the NCAA basketball tournament, were the focal point of allegations and seemed to just get a slap on the wrist like nothing ever happened.