Thompson has that extra ‘oomph’ in the shot put

Morrison one of FHS’s best ever


By Steve Williams

Farragut shot-putter Bryce Thompson won over a new fan before the school year ended.

Veteran South-Doyle track and field coach Rick Wood enjoyed seeing Thompson’s throw of 63 feet, 5 inches when he set a new KIL meet record at Hardin Valley Academy in early May.

“I’ve only seen four or five in 47 years of coaching track go over 60 feet like that in this area,” said Wood.

The 6-foot, 235-pound Thompson, the Admirals’ male Student-Athlete of the Year, went on to set a new PR (personal record) of 65-10½ when he took first place in the Division I Large Sectional meet on May 11.

Just a junior, Thompson later repeated as state champion in the shot put at the Spring Fling and took second place in the discus.

“You wouldn’t pick him out (size-wise) as the No. 1 guy throwing over 60 feet,” said Coach Wood and felt Bryce’s strength and technique set him apart.

Wood was very impressed with Thompson’s “explosiveness” in the ring at the KIL meet.

“He’s pretty much mastered that spin (in the ring),” the South-Doyle coach added. “He really has a beautiful looking spin on that shot put. To get it out 60 feet, you’ve got to have the technical aspect down. And there are a lot of technical phases to that spin.

“And of course he has developed strength in the weight room. As a football player, you know he’s in the weight room a lot.”

Thompson was an inside linebacker for the Admirals’ football team.

“A lot of guys, even bigger than (Thompson), do the spin and throw, but they throw in the 50s,” said Wood. “(Bryce) has that extra oomph to get it over 60 feet and it’s just something that’s pretty rare in high school around here anyway.

“Like I said, in my long time in coaching, I haven’t seen that many guys go over 60. That’s a pretty special throw right there now. And I always go up to a guy that I see throw over 60 and just tell them: ‘I really enjoyed seeing that. I don’t get to see a 60-foot throw very often and when I see one I really enjoy seeing it. It’s just a real accomplishment for a kid in high school and he’s a junior. Wow! That’s amazing.”

Thompson’s winning throw at state this year was marked at 61-5¾. His second-place discus throw was 159-1.

Jack Tate, Farragut’s Sports Information Director, also had this to say about Bryce: “He is an incredible student in the classroom and always treats his peers and teachers with respect.”

Elsa Morrison, a junior softball and volleyball player, was Farragut’s female honoree.

This spring, Morrison hit an amazing .594 with 16 homeruns and 39 RBIs. She had a .756 on-base percentage and scored 45 runs. She also stole 12 bases in 13 attempts and played outstanding defense at both shortstop and catcher.

Elsa has committed to play softball for the Tennessee Lady Vols. She is regarded as one of the best athletes in Farragut High School history.