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JTT HOT CHICKENS ENJOY NICKNAME

Ron Cioffi | August 12, 2019


“The kids thought it was fun.”
 

That was the concise reply from coach Tiffani Doyle when asked why the Tennessee 12 Intermediate team calls itself the Nashville Hot Chickens.
 

It also helped that Doyle’s daughter, Paili, happened to have a chicken suit in her closet. “She’s always loved animals and wants to be a vet,” the proud mom chirped.
 

When Paili isn’t playing with the team, she’s cheering them on in her full-length costume, replete with beak, eyeballs, red comb and Big-Bird yellow feathers. “She wears it most of the time. She’s out here flapping her wings. But she does take it off sometimes because we don’t want her to fall down from heatstroke,” Doyle said.
 

“We don’t want a fried chicken.”
 

Technically, Nashville’s hot chicken is fried, as patrons of Music City’s famed Hattie B’s Hot Chicken restaurant chain can attest.
 

But the Nashville Hot Chickens currently competing in the tournament have more of a chill approach to the game. The team’s white shirts display a large yellow and orange logo punctuated by poultry, a design hatched by a family friend who is a graphic designer. Saturday, one player even sported a pair of chicken socks, complemented by the team’s yellow visors and wristbands.
 

Doyle’s sunny – or, as some might say, sunny-side-up – personality shone as she chatted about the team’s handle, one coaching responsibility she was only too happy to delegate to her young charges.

“We had the kids decide on the name,” she said. “We had names like the Nashville Aces or Topspinners. But someone mentioned the restaurant and they just thought it was a lot of fun.”

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