South Carolina

Signing day roundup: Chattanooga-area prep athletes make college commitments

Here’s a recap of a number of Chattanooga-area prep athletes who made college commitments on Wednesday.

Dalton star running back Tyson Greenwade makes his pick

The Chattanooga region’s premier rusher of 2022 has found a new home.

Tyson Greenwade signed with Charleston Southern University at a ceremony Wednesday at Dalton High School, completing a nine-month journey that saw him go from college prospect to one of Georgia’s most prolific running backs.

Despite missing two games, Greenwade rushed for 1,914 yards and 23 touchdowns in his final season for the Catamounts, including a 371 yards and six touchdowns performance against North Murray in the opener and 375 yards and four points against regional opponent Hiram in the closing stages September.

Now he is an NCAA Division I signee. Charleston Southern competes in the Football Championship Subdivision as a member of the Big South Conference, and the Buccaneers enter a new era with freshman head coach Gabe Giardina.

“I really think it’s very positive for him and the team,” Dalton coach Kit Carpenter said of Greenwade’s decision. “You’re getting a great footballer and a boy of great character who is a great leader on and off the pitch. He gets a first class education in a beautiful place.”

After running 800 yards as a junior, Greenwade received very little attention from college recruiters. He promised to change that in the off-season.

“Before the season, he told me he wanted to run 2,000 yards,” Carpenter said. “The only 2,000-yard rusher I knew (for Dalton) was (2020 graduate) Jahmyr Gibbs, but if Tyson puts his mind to something, he can do anything. If he hadn’t missed those two games, there’s no doubt he would have accomplished that goal.

“He was down after his junior year but the boy who played for us this year was amazing. It was really fun to witness that every week.”

More stories from Wednesday’s book signing day:

Delinois to ETSU

Andrei Delinois has four more years to work on his “y’all”.

Delinois — a boarder who spoke very little English two years ago when he arrived in Chattanooga from Canada just before his junior season — has been a two-time star for McCallie’s football team for the past two seasons and will remain in the Volunteer State for at least another four Years after signing a scholarship to East Tennessee State University.

“It’s been a dream to play college football for a while,” said Delinois, who is from Quebec. “I was looking for a program that felt like right, and somehow when I attended ETSU I knew right away that it felt like where I wanted to be.

“After moving here, the first two months were probably the hardest, just because I was still learning to speak English. I listened a lot more than I talked for a while, but I think coming here definitely got me hooked prepared for the next level and got used to being away from home.”

Shortly after signing, Delinois spent a few minutes on a FaceTime call with his mother, who still lives 1,100 miles away.

Though the 6-foot-2, 210-pounder played both receiver and linebacker for the Blue Tornado, he is expected to play defense in college, with ETSU listing him as an outside linebacker. He finished the season with 50 total tackles and brought back one of his three interceptions for a touchdown as he helped McCallie reach the TSSAA Division II-AAA semifinals after a junior season in which the program won its third straight state title.

He will also join two former McCallie teammates — quarterback William Riddle and receiver Xavier Gaillardetz — at ETSU, a soccer championship subdivision program that competes in the Southern Conference and has a strong rivalry with the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga.

“Dre is that hybrid athlete that so many colleges are now looking for,” said Blue Tornado coach Ralph Potter. “He’s tall enough and physically enough to play linebacker but fast enough to play high school. He’s got great hands and made some big plays for us on receiver, but he’ll be a special player for them wherever they put him on defense.

“Besides his physical talent, what sets him apart is what a great leader he is in the dressing room and on the pitch. He is a kid who wants to be trained hard and responds well to challenges.”

A busy day for Bucs

Boyd Buchanan senior Jenna Randolph can consider the opportunity to play college football to be a great blessing.

In July 2021, she underwent spinal surgery after being injured in a car accident. After missing out on her junior season, Randolph returned to lead the Lady Buccaneers to their second regional championship in four years, with her assist in the winning goal in the 2-1 win over Silverdale Baptist last fall when they also won an all-district -Selection was.

Randolph will play at the next level for NCAA Division II member King University in Bristol, Tennessee, and she was joined by two of Boyd Buchanan’s teammates Wednesday: Abigail Aman (Southern Wesleyan) and Gavynn Davis (Bryan College). Aman was a TSWA All-State selection and had 20 goals and 19 assists in her prep career. Davis, a three-year starter, also helped the Lady Bucs advance to the semifinals of the TSSAA Division II-A last fall.

It was a busy day for Boyd Buchanan as several other Chattanooga private school athletes celebrated their collegiate decisions: Molly Burnett (Milligan Bowling), Jacob Hutcheson (Kentucky Wesleyan Football) and Cali Sandhoff (Covenant Volleyball).

Sandhoff was a TSWA All-State selection and region MVP who had 412 digs, 303 kills, 387 assists, 95 blocks and 75 aces to propel her team to a 30-4 overall record and the state semis last fall to lead. Hutcheson, a quarterback, totaled more than 1,000 yards of offense, and Burnett won two regional championships and rolled a set-high 664 in three games.

Busy week for Calhoun

Calhoun, the football powerhouse from Northwest Georgia, will have five seniors signing with colleges this week, including three-year-old starting offensive lineman Brody Balliew.

Balliew, two-time Times Free Press Best of Preps pick, signs with Furman, while receivers/defensive backs Cam Curtis and Dustin Kerns sign with Reinhardt, and CJ Hawkins and Kelly Wells stay close at Shorter.

“Those five meant a lot to our program,” said Calhoun coach Clay Stephenson. “This group of seniors has guided us through a coaching change and COVID-19, and their dedication and commitment has steered our program in the right direction. We’re very proud of these five players for being able to continue their education and getting the chance to play football at the next level.”

Recruitment for Reinhardt

Six local football players at Georgia schools have signed or will sign scholarships with Reinhardt University during this time, the reward for consistent recruitment in the area by coaches at the NAIA school in Waleska, about an hour north of Atlanta.

The group includes Coahulla Creek quarterback Kace Kinnamon, who had more than 2,700 total offense yards and 26 touchdowns as the Colts made the GHSA State Playoffs for the first time in program history.

“Reinhardt is definitely making a great investment in Kace Kinnamon,” said new Coahulla Creek head coach Drew Carter, who has been the program’s offensive coordinator for the past three years. “The tangible values ​​speak for themselves. He’s a true dual threat quarterback, and what sets him apart is that he’s a great competitor and student of the game. No one surpasses him and he is never satisfied with success.

“I really think he’s just picking up steam as a quarterback and his best football is yet to come.”

Kinnamon will have familiar faces in heritage receiver Tyler Cheatwood (23 catches, 673 yards, eight touchdowns) as well as Calhoun’s Curtis and Kerns.

Joining those three are offensive lineman Jayden Calhoun of Southeast Whitfield and Austin Davis of North Murray, an athletic defensive lineman who will likely move to tight end in college.

North Murray coach Preston Poag was one of the coaches impressed with Reinhardt’s staff.

“Reinhardt has sent several coaches and has been to our campus two or three times a week for the past few weeks,” said Poag, who counted unsigned quarterback Seth Griffin among Reinhardt’s interests. “They’ve done a really good job and Coach (James) Miller is building a good program.”

Tackle together

Sonoraville tight end Ridge Redd and Ringgold receiver Ty Gilbert sign with FCS Power Jacksonville State this week.

Redd, a 6-foot-5, 235-pounder who was a member of the Times Free Press Dynamite Dozen, was a big part of coach Denver Pate’s explosive offense with 612 yards and three touchdowns on 36 catches. Gilbert (6-1, 180) had a knack for finding the end zone for the Tigers in 2022, scoring nine goals on 31 catches and rushing for 484 yards.

Compiled by Stephen Hargis, Patrick MacCoon and Lindsey Young. Contact them at [email protected]

photo Staff photo of McCallie’s Robin Rudd / Andrei Delinoi, right, tackles Montgomery Bell Academy quarterback Marcel Reed to concede a loss during a regular season game last September.

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