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Oak Ridge native Tee Higgins moves on to Super Bowl

Tee Higgins becomes Coach Joe Gaddis’ first former player to make a Super Bowl appearance.
The day after leading the team in receiving yards, people in his hometown were talking about the star at the iconic Big Ed’s Pizza.
Published: Jan. 31, 2022 at 11:55 PM EST
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OAK RIDGE, Tenn. (WVLT) -When you walk into the office of coach Joe Gaddis, you’ll see three pictures of Tee Higgins. An honor that not many players get in the office of the winningest coach in Oak Ridge football history.

Tee Higgins is no ordinary player. As a standout at Clemson, he got drafted by the Cincinnati Bengals and went on to have a thousand-yard receiving year in his second season. Along with that, he is now in the Super Bowl after posting six catches and 103 yards in the AFC Championship game.

The day after leading the team in receiving yards, people in his hometown were talking about the star at the iconic Big Ed’s Pizza.

“He’s a good role model for all the young kids that you can get there if you work hard” one man said.

Another customer told WVLT News, “Nobody could stop him, pretty much he was really good.”

His former coach thought back to the 2017 grad’s days at Oak Ridge and how un-guardable number five was at the time.

“Just to throw him the ball whether he was covered or not, double covered or not, because they can’t really cover him. Even if they do cover him, if that makes any sense because he’s going to jump up and get the ball,” said Gaddis.

Gaddis said he’s been watching this Bengals playoff run with an added sense of fandom knowing one of his own is on the team and performing at a high level.

He remembered how Higgins worked on perfecting the slant route, and now uses it as a vital part of his game in the NFL.

Next weekend, Higgins will square off against the Rams in the Super Bowl, making it the first former player of coach Gaddis’ to ever play in the NFL’s biggest game.

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