Over the past several years, the Huntingdon Mustangs have made some serious road trips, and by serious, I mean long road trips to play football games. This Friday night for the third round of the playoffs that same scenario continues as the Mustangs make a trip that is 204 miles from the town of Huntingdon. But this trip, in my opinion, is a lot different than the trips the Mustangs have made before.
The die-hard Tennessee Volunteer football fans will already know the one thing that is unique about the town of Huntland, where the Mustangs must travel to for the third round of the TSSAA playoffs.
Before I get to the knowledge that a lot of folks might not know, let’s talk about the town of Huntland first. I saw where someone asked about eating places, and the advice was that you might want to stop and eat somewhere before you get to Huntland. The population of Huntland, according to the 2010 census, is 872. Huntland is located in Franklin County, and the folks from Cornersville informed me that is a fair ride from where they are, and it’s a fair ride from Huntingdon to Cornersville.
What a lot of people might not know about Huntland is that they have won a state championship, and that came in 1951. The best player on their team that year was a young man by the name of Johnny Majors, and he played for his father, Shirley Majors, who was the head coach at Huntland from 1949-57. Shirley Majors went on to become head coach at the University of the South, which is in Sewanee, from 1957-77.
In case you don’t know, Johnny, Majors went on to become a star football player for the University of Tennessee and finished second in the Heisman trophy balloting in 1956 to Paul Horning. Of course, Majors then went on to become head coach at the University of Tennessee in the late 70’s and won a National Championship at Pittsburgh before coming to Tennessee and coaching Tony Dorsett.
Although the Mustangs and fans will be traveling to a place that most of will have to google, there is some significant information about the place called Huntland. Also, for those interested on how to get to Huntland and love to drive the interstate, take I-40 to 840 then to I-65. Get off on highway 64 and go through Fayetteville, and you will soon arrive in Huntland. If you want to make a weekend of it, you are not that far away from Chattanooga, and you can take in the sites.
The Mustangs have had trouble the last two years getting by the third round, and I believe this the year that the Mustangs have a great chance on being in Cookeville to play for a state championship. If the Mustangs win this week, more than likely they will host Lake County in the semifinals for the chance to play for the title. And as Dorothy once said, “there is no place like home.”