Pigeon Forge basketball coach plans retiring No. 2 jersey in honor of deceased former player

Local News

SEVIER COUNTY, Tenn. (WATE) – Two young lives lost Wednesday had already touched the lives of those around them, especially in their chosen sports. 

Knox County deputies were called to the intersection of Emory and Bell roads Wednesday morning for reports of a crash.

     Previous Story | Two fatalities in single-vehicle Knox County crash

Deputies said Bryce Collier, 19, and Cameron Smith, 20, were killed in the wreck.

Pigeon Forge Basketball Coach Brian Jessie heard the news from his assistant coach that one of their former star players was one of the two men in the deadly crash.

Jessie said Cameron Smith wore the No. 2 jersey for basketball after transferring from Union County High.

“For us as a team, he was our best player. But, he wanted to make everybody else confident. You know, he told them how good they were,” Jessie said.

Smith also played baseball.

Jessie said Smith was a very good baseball player too. So much so, that Smith couldn’t decide which sport he should play in college.

He said Smith ended up playing baseball at Cleveland State, but after his first semester, Smith called Jessie asking for some advice.

“He was worried about making the baseball coaches down there mad, and I was like ‘just communicate with people. You can do that, you’re a good communicator, just communicate with people and everybody is going to understand if you go with your passion,'” Jessie said.

Jessie said he and the team have already discussed retiring Smith’s No. 2 jersey. He said Smith’s old locker will also serve in his memory.

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