A remarkable story has emerged out of North Carolina, where a now-former football coach reportedly offered the team’s playbook and signals to opponents.
Aaron Tuttle is the now former assistant coach in question, an ex-Smoky Mountain assistant who wasn’t retained on the Smoky Mountain staff for the 2018 season, then responded by allegedly offering up inside intel — including the team’s playbook — to coaches at Tuscola, which faced off against Smoky Mountain Friday.
As reported by Asheville, North Carolina ABC affiliate WLOS, Tuscola rolled to a 35-21 victory, though the Tuscola coaching staff has been adamant that it refused any help from Tuttle in the lead-up to the game.
While Tuttle was no longer a Smoky Mountain coach when he made the offer, he was still a teacher’s assistant at the school. That ended Monday, when he tendered his resignation after word of his offer to the Tuscola coaches leaked.
As for Tuttle’s motivation, the coach who was initially offered the inside intel, Austin Chambers, told WLOS the former Smoky Mountain assistant’s discontent went beyond the rejection he received from new Smoky Mountain coach Rickey Brindley:
“It seemed kind of shady to me, to try and undercut another coach like that,” Chambers said.
“(Tuttle) just sounded like sour grapes. He said his son was playing for Cherokee now instead of Smoky Mountain, and he seemed sour about that.”
While there are any number of disturbing aspects of Tuttle’s offer, Chambers highlighted what could be the single most concerning, albeit in a capacity that only impacts Tuttle and his family: He allegedly made the offer to Chambers and Tuscola in front of his own son.
“His youngest son was listening to this, and saying, ‘Yeah, we have all those signals and stuff,” Chambers told WLOS. “To me, that’s like teaching your kid that it’s OK to cheat.
“I thought that was kind of pathetic.”