The John Overton (Nashville, Tenn.) High School football program must forfeit its first-round playoff game after a fight broke out following the Bobcats’ win over Antioch (Nashville, Tenn.) last Friday.
The Tennessee Secondary School Athletic Association banned Overton and Antioch from postseason play this year and next season on Thursday. Antioch (0-10) did not make the playoffs this year.
Overton (4-6), which had earned the No. 3 seed from Region 5-6A, was scheduled to play at Ravenwood in the first round of the Class 6A playoffs on Friday. The Raptors will instead receive a bye.
The TSSAA staff reviewed video footage and the police report from the incident before handing down its ruling on Thursday afternoon.
According to a letter sent to both schools’ principals from TSSAA executive director Bernard Childress, several players from both teams engaged in a physical altercation that started when the teams lined up to shake hands following the Bobcats’ 24-0 win.
“Instead, a fight quickly turned into a brawl,” Childress wrote. “There were unidentified adults and students on the field.”
According to the police report, officers were already on scene helping control the players when they observed an Antioch player “rare back with a helmet and start swinging.”
“This caused a riot to break out between the two teams and people started coming out of the stands,” the letter states. “At this time, officers put out a code 5000 (personnel in danger) as they saw things escalating quickly.”
Representatives of Overton and Antioch did not reply to requests seeking comment.