Heavy rain floods Red Bank HS football field
Heavy rain put a damper on the kickoff to Red Bank High School's football season. The team was forced to cancel their rivalry season opener against Soddy-Daisy Friday night.
But the rain is causing bigger issues on the field.
Head football coach, Chris Brown, says whenever it pours, their game field floods. He says it's something his team has to tackle often.
“It's fairly deep and it's not the best thing you ever smelled in your life and more than anything it's just a safety hazard as far as the playing surface goes,” Brown said.
Brown says flooding has been an issue since late March.
“If it's any kind of drizzle, it's not going anywhere," Brown explained. "Even when it does rain, you'll notice we can never mow it all the way down. We can't trust our equipment to mow in those spots even after three or four days of dry weather. That's why the grass is higher in that area.”
Hamilton County's athletic director, Brad Jackson, says the field's drainage system is to blame. He says maintenance crews have assessed it several times. We’re told because it's an engineering problem, it's up to the county to address the damage, which Brown says is severe.
“It's awfully hard to invest a lot of money on a football side of it without knowing that it's going to be properly maintained on its own through conditions,” Brown said.
Brown says his team is fortunate to have practice fields where they can avoid the water. On game days, he says he prays for clear skies.
“[We} will just be kind of waiting and hoping that they will make their way around to our field when it's time to,” Brown said. “We just got to make it work. Whatever happens, you control what you can control.”
We're told county officials are set to meet with the school district on to discuss what's next in the repair process on Friday. Jackson says it's not clear how much repairs will cost and who will be responsible.