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Off the Field – Smith era underway (June 10, 2015 issue)

The Michael Smith era for the Unicoi County High School boys basketball team is already underway.
After being named the head coach last week, Smith and his coaching staff have stayed busy with camp at King University. Smith and company have more camps on the horizon, including stints at Greeneville and Tennessee Tech.
The landscape is nothing new to Smith, who has been a mainstay with the program for over a decade as a coach, in addition to his playing career.
“Smitty” knows what needs to be done and looks for the Blue Devils to be among the top of the Three Rivers Conference during the 2015-16 season.
Smith will take the court with assistant coaches Ben Evely and Drew Rice – both of whom are also former Blue Devils. Over 20 years of coaching inside the Devils Den resides on that bench. From the substate games to preseason workouts, the coaches simply know how to get the job done.
A loaded pool of underclassmen talent awaits Blue Nation next season. Dalton Spears returns as a senior providing leadership on the court and will be backed up by the play of junior Dylan Putman and sophomore Trevor Hensley. Other seniors looking to lead the charge include Hunter Hensley, Brandon Caldwell and Ethan Godsey
Along with the sharpshooters, the Blue Devils bring a crowded presence down low with Clay Simpson, Jacob Smith and Chase McNabb bringing varsity minutes from their underclassmen campaign last season.
Smith, Evely and Rice helped prime the youthful ride of momentum and expect the talent to keep funneling in.
Guys like Michael Howell, Brett Lemmon and Noah Worley are ready to take that next step and a core of incoming freshmen, including Brett Strother, will only make things bright for the future of the program.
Coach English helped usher in over a decade of dominance across the region. Don’t expect things to change with coach Smith at the helm.
Another bright side, we’re just a few months away from the tip-off for the regular season.
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The fields across Tennessee are going to be heating up during the summer with football teams preparing for the upcoming football season.
UCHS has a loaded deck on the agenda, including multiple passing leagues before preseason scrimmages all leading up to their season opener with South Greene in August.
Stay up to date with The Erwin Record for more scheduling information.
The Blue Devils are preparing to charter new waters next season under head coach Glenn White. New conference reclassifications now have UCHS inside the Mountain Eight Conference. Their opponents will include Chuckey-Doak, Claiborne, Elizabethton, Johnson County, Northview Academy, Pigeon Forge and West Greene.
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