The 16th Annual Christus Trinity Mother Frances Football Classic in Tyler will feature two games this year, including a nationally televised contest and two teams eyeing 3-0 start.

It all starts Thursday with old foes John Tyler and Longview meeting in a game to be broadcast around the country from Christus Trinity Mother Frances Rose Stadium. Kickoff is set for 7 p.m. on Earl Campbell Field with ESPN2 carrying the game as part of the GEICO ESPN High School Football Showcase.

Saturday night, Tyler Lee looks for its third win as the Red Raiders take on Nacogdoches. Kickoff is set for 7 p.m.

As for JT and Longview, this will be the 96th edition of the Lions and Lobos. It is such a heated rivalry that the schools can’t agree on the win totals.

According to Joe Lee Smith’s, JT and Longview have played 95 times with the Lobos leading 48-40-7. Smith, a Tyler resident, was the longtime Lamar University sports information director and he is a member of the Texas High School Football Hall of Fame.

However, Lobo football historian Bill Simpson’s has the Lobos leading 50-38-7.

Longview, the defending Class 6A Division II state champions, has won 18 straight games after beginning the season with victories over Lufkin (24-21) and Marshall (53-0).

JT has started the season 0-2 after losses to Mesquite Horn (39-17) and Robert E. Lee (34-7).

Lee is 2-0 on the season with wins over Marshall (27-20) and JT.

Nacogdoches is 0-2 after dropping games to Kilgore (17-14) and Lufkin (44-0).


Advanced ticket prices are $3 (students), $5 (adults) and $8 (reserved). Gate ticket prices are $8 (general admission) and $10 (reserved).

There is also a Classic General Admission Bundle for $8 that will get you into both games of the Classic.

The only passes accepted this week will be 11-6A District Pass and 7-5A Division I Pass. THSCA, TGCA and TISD Employee badges will not be honored during The Classic.

Pre-sale tickets and the Classic General Admission Bundle may be purchased at

Ticket locations include:

TISD Athletic Office, Plyler Complex, 807 W. Glenwood, Wednesday and Thursday — 8 a.m. to 4 p.m.; Friday — 8 a.m. to noon; Phone — 903-262-3080.

Tyler Athletics, 5520 Old Jacksonville Highway, Tyler, 75703; Wednesday and Thursday — 9 a.m. to 7 p.m.; Friday — 9 a.m. to noon; Phone — 903-534-9500.

T&T Lewis (John Tyler tickets only), 903 W. Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd., Wednesday and Thursday — 9 a.m. to 7 p.m.; Friday — 9 a.m. to noon; Phone — 903-535-9551.


Sports Editor

I am a native Tylerite and I grew up reading the Tyler Morning Telegraph and The Tyler Courier-Times. My parents took both the morning and afternoon papers. I came to work here 35 years ago at the age of 23, right after college.

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