Bronson Bradley led the Mt. Pleasant football program the last seven seasons and helped the Tigers make four Class 1A playoff appearances but in the end that didn’t matter.
Despite the 38-37 overall record and four playoff trips for Mt. Pleasant under Bradley (2014, 2015, 2018 and 2019), he was fired on Friday.
“I was let go by the administration of Mt Pleasant today. I was not expecting it but football is held to a higher standard even in Covid years. I can say without a doubt and without challenge that this program is better than when I found it 7 years ago,” Bradley said in a media prepared statement.
“I have brought a lot of value to this program including a new stadium, new lights, a field that was dirt and clover is now one of the best around, a top class weight room and program, new lockers and grade A practice equipment. A reputation that draws college recruiters year in and year out.”
After making back-to-back playoff appearances in 2018 and 2019, the Tigers struggled this season finishing with a 1-8 record but four of their losses were by less than eight points losing to Eagleville 14-6, Zion Christian 34-27, Richland 14-7 and Summertown 13-12.
“My family loves this community and the young men that have played for me. The relationships I have built with them go far beyond football and I pray they can say the same. I see them already succeeding in life, in the service of our country, and as future leaders. I believe I was called by God to help the young men of this community to be better men and I pray the next man puts that above all the outside pressures of being a football coach. I leave this program without blemish! I am proud of my time here and I have no regrets.
“As with every thing I put this and my future in God’s hands and He will work it to my benefit but most importantly to HIS,” Bradley continued.
Over his seven seasons at Mt. Pleasant, the Tigers had a better record than Maury County schools Columbia (32-43 in seven years) and Spring Hill (27-51).
Before becoming the head coach at Mt. Pleasant, Bradley served as the head coach at Westmoreland back in 2009.
Murray Out at Smith County
Scott Murray, a 1990 Smith County graduate has been relieved of his coaching duties after two seasons in Carthage.
finished with 11-12 record at his Alma mater and led the Owls to back-to-back Class 3A playoff appearances as they finished 4-7 this year losing to Brainerd 14-13 in the first round.
Murray had previous head coaching experience at three different metro schools in Nashville leading the Glencliff program (2008-09), Whites Creek (2011-12) and at Hunters Lane (2013-15) before going and coaching linebackers on the collegiate level at nearby Cumberland University for three seasons (2016-18) before coming back to Carthage.
He also served as an assistant at Smith County, Beech, Riverdale and Antioch before taking the Glencliff job in 2008.
Murray led the Colts to the Class 5A playoffs in 2009 as they finished the season with a 5-6 record and the 2009 season is the only season a Murray led team made the playoffs as his overall coaching record is 29-65.
Knoxville Grace Going Into Different Direction With Football Program Let Rusty Bradley Go
Four playoff appearances and a 29-17 record in four seasons wasn’t enough for Rusty Bradley to keep his job at Knoxville Grace.
The Rams finished 8-3 this year as they lost to Chattanooga Christian in the first round of the Division II-AA playoffs last week.
Grace made the DII-AA playoffs all four seasons under Bradley who has a 126-51 overall head coaching record.
Before coming to Grace, Bradley spent the 2016 season at USJ where he led the Bruins to the Division II-A semifinal round where they lost to eventual state champion Lausanne as they finished the season with a 9-4 record.
Before going to USJ, Bradley had a ton of success at Christian Academy of Knoxville (CAK) where they won back to back Class 3A state titles in 2011 and 2012 in his nine years there.
The Warriors under Bradley made nine playoff appearances including six straight appearances to at least the Quarterfinal round (2010-15).
Before Bradley took over the Warrior program in 2007, he was the offensive coordinator at CAK (2003-06).
Ligenfelter Retires at Sevier County
After 31 years including the last seven as the the head coach, Tony Ligenfelter has retired at Sevier County.
“I have coached 37 years and I believe it is time for me to retire from coaching. I would like to thank Dr. Parton, Mrs. Huskey and Mr. Ward for the opportunity of being the head coach at Sevier County High School. It has been a great experience and I have enjoyed every minute of it,” Ligenfelter tweeted.
The Smoky Bears made the 5A playoffs this season and finished the season 5-6 as Ligenfelter led Sevier County to a 39-41 overall record in his seven-year tenure in Sevierville which included four playoff appearances (2014 in 6A and 2015, 2017 and 2020 in 5A).
The Smoky Bears best season under Ligenfelter came back in 2015 as they finished as the 5A Runner up as they finished 12-3, losing to Independence in the state title game.
Currently eight schools in Knoxville Grace, Humboldt, Mt. Pleasant, Portland, Sevier County, Smith County, Summertown, and Tyner are looking for a head coach.
Contact Donovan at email@example.com and follow him on Twitter at Examine_Stew