Conference History


Big 6

1956 - 1958

Greeneville joined the Big Six conference along with charter members Kingsport Dobyns-Bennett, Johnson City Science Hill, Unicoi County of Erwin, Bristol Tennessee High, and Elizabethton.  While Greeneville had played those schools before, it was the first officially organized conference where teams would regularly schedule selected opponents.

Big 7

1959 - 1962

In 1959, Morristown joined the conference and it became the Big Seven.  

Big 6

1963 - 1966

In August of 1963, the Big 7 teams met and voted to require all conference members to use the Appalachian Booking Agency in Johnson City to provide officials for all conference games.  Kingsport Dobyns Bennett refused to agree to the proposal.  In a meeting in Greeneville on September 8, 1963, Kingsport withdrew for the conference.  However, they did agree to honor all contracts and remained on the schedule for their previously scheduled games.  The meeting adjoured as the Big Six Conference.  

Big 7

1967 - 1970

Kingsport Dobyns Bennett and Science Hlll finally executed contracts to resume their games, marking the return of the Indians to the conference.  Morristown High School divided into Morristown East and Morristown West beginning with the 1968 season.  Morristown East, which occupied the original Morristown High School building, remained a member.


Big 9

1971 - 1976

Sullivan East and Sullivan Central joined in 1971 as the conference grew to nine members. Neither were eligible for a conference title for the first season in 1971.


1977 - 1980

In 1977, the TSSAA stopped using power points to determine classifications and playoffs, and instead schools were divided into districts for district play and playoff advancement.   Greeneville and Morristown East joined the Inter-Mountain Athletic Conference (IMAC) with Cocke County, Morristown West, Daniel Boone, Sevier County, Jefferson County, and David Crockett. 

1981 - 1983 

In 1981, Sevier County left the conference, but was replaced with Cherokee, which had opened its doors in 1980.  


Daniel Boone left the conference in 1984, dropping the number to seven teams, where it remained through the 1992 season.   

Five Rivers

1993 - 1994

Prior to the 1993 season, the TSSAA re-classified football from three classifications to five.  The IMAC was classified as "4A" league, moving charter members Jefferson County and Morristown East up to 5A.  Knox Carter, and former 2A school Volunteer filled the gap.  The IMAC came to be known as the Five Rivers Conference, but was still called the IMAC by traditionalists. 

Mountain Lakes

1995 - 1996

Re-classification again in 1995, just two years later, moved Cherokee, Greeneville and David Crockett back into the Big Nine/Mountain Lakes Conference with Elizabethton, Tennessee High, Daniel Boone and Sullivan South, Sullivan Central, and Sullivan East.   Since Morristown East and Jefferson County had moved to 5A, and Volunteer had dropped to 2A, there were no original members left and the IMAC just faded into history.  



1997 - 1998 

Just two years later, the TSSAA changed their mind and decided it was better before they "fixed" things and returned the Five Rivers/IMAC conference to include both Morristown schools, Cherokee, and charter members Cocke County, Greeneville, and Crockett.   Jefferson County remained in 5A classification.

1999 - 2000

A slight increase in enrollment put Morristown East just barely above the limit for 4A schools and they were moved up to 5A for the 1999 and 2000 seasons.  They were replaced with Volunteer.  

2001 - 2004

Two years later, East's enrollment dropped just enough to allow them to drop back to 4A, where they joined the IMAC again.

2005 - 2008

Beginning with the 2005 season, Daniel Boone was welcomed back into the IMAC.   Boone, a charter member in 1977, was moved from the Mountain Lakes Conference after Sullivan North elected to move up a level in classification, placing nine teams in that conference.  The TSSAA moved Boone to the IMAC, making Region 1 and 2 equal in size with eight teams each.


Prior to the 2009 season, the TSSAA adopted the "Z-plan."  This plan would provide for three main divisions of schools during the regular season - A, AA, and AAA - and six classifications in the post-season, 1A through 6A.  Each major regular season division would be split for post season games.  This would mean that smaller teams would be forced to be in a conference with larger teams during the regular season, but would play schools closer to their own size in the post season. 

Since classification of schools based on size began years before, Greeneville had always chosen to play at a higher level of classification (and competition) than their student population dictated.  This enabled rivalries that dated back to over 80 years to continue. But the administration announced that beginning with the 2009 season, Greeneville would drop down and compete in the level of classification that their size permitted.


2009 - 2012  

Greeneville's new level of classification placed them in a conference with fellow Greene County schools Chuckey Doak, South Greene, and West Greene, along with three teams north of Bean Gap - Grainger and Claiborne Counties and Cumberland Gap.  

2013 - 2014

South Greene's enrollment declined and the Rebels left the conference in 2013. 


2015 - 2016

After the 2014 season, the TSSAA reclassified all schools again and changed the playoff structure back to the way it used to be:  one region's #1 seed played the adjacent region's #4 seed, doing away with the "wildcard" format it has used since 2009.  Greeneville was placed in a new conference named the NorthEast Conference, and was reunited with some old IMAC opponents:  Cherokee and Volunteer.  Sullivan Central, Sullivan East, and Sullivan South were added from the east, and Seymour was brought up to join the new conference. 

Region 1


The TSSAA decided for more changes starting in 2016.  All schools would submit their enrollment and six divisions would be made, with an equal amount of teams in each division.  (Previously, classes weren't all equal in number of schools.  In fact, for the previous few seasons the 6A class consisted of 32 teams, and each and every team advanced to the playoffs, regardless of their regular season performance.)

Schools were still given the opportunity to move up in classification, and a few did.

Greeneville's new conference would be made up of Greeneville, Sullivan Central, Sullivan East, Sullivan South, Elizabethton, Grainger, and Union County.  The addition of Union County highlighted a flaw with the new classification.  Located forty-five minutes north of Knoxville, Union County's other option would to have been to join Anderson County and four other schools all from the Chattanooga City limits for Region 2.  Anderson County was just a bit closer to Chattanooga than Union County.  Those two are the only two schools in the Knoxville area to fall in the 4A classification that didn't choose to play in a larger division or find themselves reclassified as 5A.

No official name has been given to the new conference.