By Don Jones,
The five Hall of Fame members in this year’s class are Ensworth’s Ricky Bowers, Stewarts Creek’s David Martin, Knoxville Webb’s David Meske, former Maryville coach and current Furman assistant George Quarles and Lewis County’s Bobby Sharp.
The Hall of Fame induction ceremony will take place on Saturday, December 2, 2017 at the Life Church in Cookeville, Tennessee.
“Now in our fourth year of selecting members to our Hall of Fame, the TNFCA board of directors is extremely pleased to announce our 2017 Hall of Fame inductees,” TNFCA President Thomas McDaniel said.
Coach Sharp will begin his 30th year as head coach for Lewis County this season, which is the third current, longest tenured in the state behind David Meske, 33 years at Knoxville Webb, and Jeff Porter, 31 years at White House.
The Panthers are 235-105 under Sharp and have made 27 playoff appearances with a remarkable run of 25 straight years in the playoffs, every year since 1991
The Panthers have had 10 seasons of at least 10 wins under Coach Sharp and he has also led the Panthers to six undefeated seasons in 1995, 2001, 2003, 2007, 2008 and 2013.
Coach Sharp’s influence goes much deeper than the outstanding record. Dozens of his former players have also become successful coaches and educators in their own right. He and his wife, Sue, have been a positive influence on many young folks over the last 30 years.
One of the very first men to coach along side Bobby Sharp was Director of Schools Benny Pace, who served as Panther defensive coordinator for several years.
He had this to say about Coach Sharp. “Not many places can say that they have a true legend coaching their team. We here in Lewis County have had a legend coaching our team for the past 29 years. He is very well thought of in the coaching world by the coaches and players alike. We are very blessed to have him here with us.”