Crockett's Larkins traveling toward rarefied air

Douglas Fritz • Nov 5, 2018 at 5:13 PM

Cade Larkins could finish his high school career as Tennessee’s all-time leading passer.

And the David Crockett junior simply needs to sustain his current pace.

The 6-foot-2, 215-pound quarterback enters Friday’s playoff game against Tennessee High with 7,852 career yards. He is averaging 312 yards per game this year, and would move into 10th-place on the state’s all-time career list with 256 yards against the Vikings.

Depending how far the Pioneers get in this year’s playoffs, Larkins could enter his senior season well under 3,000 yards short of Trinity Christian’s Kyle Akin, who holds the all-time state record with 11,122.

Larkins started his climb as a freshman, passing for 1,156 yards. He more than doubled that mark in 2017, totaling 2,903. This year, he has a new career high with 3,433 yards heading into the second round of the TSSAA Class 5A playoffs.

A semifinalist for Tennessee’s Mr. Football award, Larkins is already in the record books for single-season passing yardage. His 261-yard effort in Friday’s first-round overtime win over Knox Halls moved him into 10th place, ahead of Akin, who threw for 3,421 yards in 2013.

Larkins needs 306 yards to move into seventh place on the single-season list, ahead of Ezell-Harding’s J.P. Shelly — who racked up 312 of his yards in the Class 1A state-title win over Cloudland in 2001.

Also, Larkins has 38 touchdown tosses this season, three away from a top-10 all-time single-season ranking. He has 67 touchdown passes for his career.


Elizabethton’s Carter Everett has a chance to reach 7,000 career passing yards in Friday’s second-round game at Anderson County. The senior has 6,804 going into the contest.

He also has 83 career touchdowns, which is tied for 10th on the all-time list. …

Greeneville’s Cade Ballard has 106 touchdown passes over the last three seasons, moving the senior into the top five all time and bumping those below him down a notch.

Ballard, who is averaging just 2.3 incomplete passes per game this year, continued his run toward having more touchdown passes than incompletions with 34 scoring strikes and 23 misfires. He is also working toward an incredible perfect season with zero interceptions. …

Elizabethton running back Corey Russell needs one more touchdown to tie Ethan Thomas for the school record and move into 10th place on the state’s all-time list. Russell, who scored three touchdowns Friday, has 78 for his career.


Dobyns-Bennett’s Cade Salyers and Science Hill’s Blake Austin were chosen to play in the Toyota East-West All-Star Classic.

The standout linemen are among 88 of the state’s top senior football players, and will participate for the East squad in the event at Austin Peay State University in Clarksville on Dec. 7. Kickoff is set for 7 p.m.

Happy Valley head coach Jason Jarrett will be an assistant for the East.

Football games of the week

Science Hill at Maryville

Tennessee High at David Crockett

Daniel Boone at Knox Central

Sullivan South at Greeneville

Elizabethton at Anderson County

Unicoi County at Alcoa

Coalfield at Cloudland

Hilltoppers vs. Rebels — Ball control is a must for Science Hill. It’s not that Maryville’s offense is explosive as much as it is painfully (for the opponent) efficient. The Rebels have been over 42 points just twice, but under 28 only once.

Vikings vs. Pioneers — It’s a rematch of an overtime battle less than a month ago, and one of the most intriguing games in Northeast Tennessee in quite some time. Crockett is favored, but a rainy and windy night could tilt the scales toward the Vikings.

Trailblazers vs. Bobcats — Central started the season with back-to-back losses, but followed with nine straight wins and has been challenged only once in that stretch. Over the last four weeks, Central has outscored its opponents 172-13. It’s a underdog role for Boone.

Rebels vs. Greene Devils — A month ago, the Greene Devils won 62-7. It’s hard to imagine South finding a way to close a 55-point gap.

Cyclones vs. Mavericks — Last year, Anderson County quarterback Stanton Martin totaled 475 yards of offense in a 38-21 win that was pretty much decided by the third quarter. To have a chance, Elizabethton must find a way to slow the Mavs’ Mr. Football candidate.

Blue Devils vs. Tornadoes — Alcoa may have the best team in the state. Unicoi might need to play its best-ever game just to have a chance to stay within shouting distance.

Yellowjackets vs. Highlanders — After four years of Parker McKinney helping inflict season-ending damage, Cloudland now faces quarterback Peyton McKinney — and the potential for a fifth straight home-field playoff loss to Coalfield.

Pick of the Week

Knox Central 30, Daniel Boone 20

The Bobcats appear to have too much offensive firepower, and a difficult-to-block defense, for the Trailblazers to handle.

Picks record: 6-5.

Player of the Week

Jordan Coffey, Cloudland

The Highlanders found themselves in a fourth-quarter battle with Midway as the game was tied. However, Coffey kept running and Cloudland will keep playing.

In the 36-22 muddy win, Coffey carried 39 times for 273 yards and scored all five of his team’s touchdowns in the first round of the Class 1A playoffs.

The Hogs Award

Sullivan South Rebels

The Purple Pounders were the ones getting pounded, again and again by South’s dominant offensive line. The Rebel Hogs won the line of scrimmage and led the team to a 39-12 victory.

Defensive unit of the Week

Sullivan South Rebels

Keeping its season alive, the Rebels’ defense turned a potential close game into a 39-12 blowout. The Rebels limited Chattanooga Central to 215 yards of offense and picked off three passes, including Asa Munson’s pick six.

College signings

Four Science Hill baseball players will make their college choices official on Nov. 14 at the Science Hill gym. Drew Honeycutt and Ben Edwards are headed to Walters State, Jackson Hill will go to Carson-Newman, and Garrett Gleason will sign with King University. The ceremony will take play at 3 p.m.

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