Christian Brothers High School (Memphis, Tennessee)

Christian Brothers High School
CBHS purple crest.png
Virtus et Scientia
Character and Knowledge
5900 Walnut Grove Road
Memphis, Tennessee, 38120
 United States
Coordinates 35°07′51″N 89°51′51″W / 35.130880°N 89.864290°W / 35.130880; -89.864290Coordinates: 35°07′51″N 89°51′51″W / 35.130880°N 89.864290°W / 35.130880; -89.864290
Religious affiliation(s) Roman Catholic
Established 1871
President Br. Chris Englert
Dean Mr. George Pratt
Principal Mr. Chris Fay
Asst. Principal Br. Joel McGraw
Faculty 87[1]
Grades 912
Gender Male
Slogan "Go Brothers"

"Tide Roll"

Song Bless This House
Fight song CBHS Fight Song

(Aggie War Hymn)

Athletics 10 TSSAA Sports

6 Club Sports

Athletics conference TSSAA Division II - AA West
Sports Football, Basketball, Baseball, Soccer, Golf, Tennis, Track & Field, Cross Country, Wrestling, Bowling
Mascot The Wave CBHS wave.png
Nickname Purple Wave
Rival Memphis University School
Accreditation(s) Southern Association of Colleges and Schools[2][3]
Publication Purple & Gold
Newspaper 'The Maurelian'
Yearbook 'Chronicle'
Affiliation Christian Brothers University
Sister Schools Immaculate Conception HS

St. Agnes Academy

Club Sports Lacrosse, Fencing, Swimming, Trap Shooting, Hockey, Rugby, Indoor Soccer
Other Clubs Model UN, Knowledge Bowl, Chess, Theatre, Band, Chorus, SGA, Robotics, Guitar, Paintball, Photography
Shoping Wave Shop
Video Tradition of Excellence

Christian Brothers High School (CBHS) is located in Memphis, Tennessee, at 5900 Walnut Grove Rd. It is an all-male college preparatory school and Catholic school that has a strong Lasallian tradition that can be traced back to John Baptist de La Salle. All graduates are accepted to college and recent alumni are attending such institutions as Vanderbilt University, Georgetown University, University of Pennsylvania, Marquette University, Duke University, Princeton University, Brown University, Cornell University, Harvard College, University of Notre Dame, and Washington University in St. Louis.[1]




The school was founded as Christian Brothers College on November 19, 1871, by members of the Institute of the Brothers of the Christian Schools, a Roman Catholic religious teaching congregation. The Brothers came to Memphis at the request of the people and clergy of the city, after more than a decade of efforts to persuade the Brothers to open a college in Memphis.

Brother Maurelian was appointed the first president. During his presidency, a period which lasted 33 years, the Brothers purchased the 612 Adams Street building, which housed the college until 1940 when the school moved to its present location at Central Avenue and East Parkway South.

Functioning as a combined elementary school, high school, and college, Christian Brothers College granted high school diplomas as well as Bachelor's and Master's Degrees until 1915, when the college division was suspended. Elementary classes were dropped in 1922, and the institution operated as only a high school for 18 years. In 1940, the college opened again as a junior college and began granting Associate's Degrees in 1942. Several years later in 1965 the high school left the college campus and moved to a new campus located at 5900 Walnut Grove Rd. in East Memphis. At that point it became known as Christian Brothers High School. The college is now known as Christian Brothers University, and is still on East Parkway.

The Christian Brothers Band is the oldest high school band in America, being continuous since it's founding in 1872.[4]

Lasallian tradition

Christian Brothers University traces its origins to priest and educational innovator, St. John Baptist de La Salle, the patron saint of teachers. [2]

De La Salle began a system of Christian schools in which teachers assist parents in the educational, ethical, and religious formation of their children. To continue his spiritual and pedagogical vision, De La Salle founded the Institute of the Brothers of the Christian Schools, known today as the De La Salle Christian Brothers.

Today, the spirit and tradition of the Lasallian community thrives in 81 countries and in more than 1,000 educational institutions. Over 4,000 De La Salle Christian Brothers, along with 56,000 Lasallian lay colleagues, serve over 750,000 students and their families worldwide. [3]

In the United States, there are over 100 Lasallian educational institutions.


CBHS is located on a 50-acre (200,000 m2) campus in the heart of East Memphis, sixteen miles east of Downtown. The campus encompasses the main school building, gym, football & practice field, 2,300 gallon aquarium, baseball field and club house, soccer & practice field, tennis courts and housing for the brothers who work at the school.

The CBHS Bell Tower is the most recognizable structure on the fifty acre campus. Ringing three times a day, it serves as a comforting reminder that God is always present in our daily lives


The mission of Christian Brothers High School is to provide young men a quality, college-preparatory education in an academic and religious environment which emphasizes knowledge of self, service to the community, and an understanding and appreciation of the values embodied in the traditions of Lasallian schools throughout the world. The school is also run by an honor board which is made up of a group of elected students.


The following is the stated philosophy of the school:

"Christian Brothers High School, a private, Catholic school, is a community of believers in the Lasallian tradition, inclusive of students, faculty, staff, parents, and alumni, who represent various religious, ethnic, and economic backgrounds, working together to achieve a shared mission: To give a human and Christian education to the young and to promote peace and justice, with a commitment to the service of the poor.

We value the uniqueness and dignity of the individual and the wellbeing of the entire Christian Brothers High School community. We value the ongoing development of our spiritual, academic, social, and physical formation in light of gospel values.

In an atmosphere of academic excellence and in appreciation of individual differences, we at Christian Brothers High School inspire and direct individuals toward an increased understanding of themselves and their community. We strive to encourage a personal sense of honor and self‑discipline, service to others, a respect for all life, and a growth toward a mature relationship with God.

In light of our shared mission, the Christian Brothers High School community works together to minister in an orderly environment which encourages learning as a lifelong process, independent thinking, concern for the individual, and service to the community.''


The vision of Christian Brothers High School is to be an educational leader inspired by the moral and spiritual teachings of St. John Baptist de La Salle. This is accomplished by:

  • Promoting a spiritual environment which acknowledges the diversity of different religious traditions and the responsibility to use these values as a basis for service to others and the betterment of society.
  • Committing programs and resources for service of the poor.
  • Encouraging and recognizing excellence in its students and faculty.
  • Providing an atmosphere conducive to learning and creativity for students and faculty.
  • Creating a caring, Lasallian community environment which includes students, parents, teachers, administrators, staff and alumni.
  • Providing a spirit of collaboration among administration, staff, teachers, parents and students.
  • Valuing the uniqueness of each student and making every effort to meet his needs.
  • Developing young men with the highest standard of educational, moral and spiritual background prepared to embark on the challenges of today's society.
  • Developing self‑confidence in the student.
  • Promoting the image of the school in a manner which exemplifies the values which are emphasized and taught therein.


Christian Brothers offers a wide variety of musical experiences. The Band is "The Oldest High School Band in America" founded in 1872 and consists of a concert band and pep band. This group is recognized throughout the country as a pillar of excellence, having performed at the Midwest Clinic, Carnegie Hall and the Lincoln Center as well as receiving superior ratings at concert festivals from Hawaii to Washington D.C. The Jazz Band, "Walnut Groove," performs many times throughout the year, on campus and off. A Historic Brass Band performs in replica civil war era uniforms and marches in parades along with performing in many civic celebrations and dedications in the city. An orchestra and choir are also available to students. The music department is under the direction of Mr. Patrick Bolton.


The CB monogram has been the logo for the high school's athletic teams since 2004

The athletic teams are known as the Purple Wave or simply the Brothers.

Christian Brothers is well known for consistently having State Championship caliber teams. Ten different sports teams are fielded for Tennessee Secondary School Athletic Association (TSSAA) competition and each one has claimed State Titles. The Brothers are classified in Division II - Class AA West and compete at the highest level of competition. The football team is widely respected in the mid-south region and is known for their passionate fan base of family, friends, students, and alumni. The classic purple and gold schemed uniforms are unmistakable each Friday night in the Fall. Purple Wave basketball hits the hardwood every winter with a consistently filled gymnasium. No shortage of excitement, fans watch CBHS hold their own against the top basketball schools in the area that are always packed with talent. The basketball team claimed its lone State Title in 1987; however, another championship might not be far away. They have played for the championship twice since 2008 coming up short on both occasions.

As much pride and tradition football and basketball have, nothing can match the utter dominance of the Christian Brothers baseball and soccer programs. Year in and year out, these two programs are loaded with some of the most talented players in the Memphis area. The soccer team has won 8 championships in the last 20 years and have 3-peated twice. Since 2000, the two programs account for 10 State Championships. This past spring, the baseball team went undefeated in the playoffs and won the 2011 State Championship. The soccer team tried to complete their third 3-peat, but lost 1-0 to Nashville Fr. Ryan in the championship game.

The golf, tennis, track, and cross country teams have seen both outstanding team and individual success. The wrestling team currently holds the best place at the TSSAA Wrestling tournaments for both duals and individuals within West Tennessee. The golf team has been historically dominate in years past, as they claimed three State Titles in the 90s. Track & field enjoys the most consistent success for both individual and team championships. Most recently, CBHS finished 1-2-3 in the shot put at the State Championships this past Spring. Not to be overshadowed, the Brothers have also fielded a bowling team every year since the sport was first established by the TSSAA. The Brothers went 13-0 and won the State Title in 2003, then repeated in 2004 with a record of 13-1. The team has three total State Championships, tying for most in the state since the sport debuted in 2002.

State Championships:

  • Baseball - 9 (1948, 1959, 1961, 1964, 1997, 2000, 2001, 2005, 2007, 2011) most by any school in Tennessee
  • Basketball - 1 (1987)
  • Bowling- 3 (2003, 2004, 2009) tied most by any school in Tennessee
  • Cross Country - 1 team: (1982) 2 individual: (1999, 2001)
  • Football - 1 (1977)
  • Golf - 8 team: (1949, 1966, 1969, 1975, 1984, 1990, 1997, 1998) 7 individual: (1966, 1975, 1980, 1983, 1984, 1986, 1992, 1994) 2nd most by any school in Tennessee
  • Soccer - 8 (1990, 1991, 1992, 2001, 2002, 2003, 2009, 2010) most by any school in Tennessee
  • Tennis - 1 team: (1941) 2 singles: (1941, 1970) 2 doubles: (1940, 1941)
  • Track & Field- 2 team: (1964, 2010) 39 individual events: (multiple years from 1955–present)
  • Wrestling - 22 individual: (multiple years from 1981–present)

Current Head Coaches by Sport:

  • Baseball- Buster Kelso
  • Basketball - Bubba Luckett
  • Bowling -
  • Cross Country -
  • Fencing - Thomas Klitz
  • Football - Kevin Locastro
  • Golf - Joey Harris
  • Ice Hockey -
  • Lacrosse - David Czernecki
  • Rugby - Jeffrey Blancett
  • Soccer - Rogerio Lima
  • Swimming - Don Whittington
  • Tennis - Br. Robert O'Kane
  • Track - Carl Brock
  • Trap Shooting -
  • Wrestling - Chris Lewis

Notable Alumni

  • Tim McCarver - Former Major League Baseball player and World Series Champion, current broadcaster for Fox Sports
  • Shaun Micheel - Professional golfer, winner of the 2003 PGA Championship[5]
  • Cary Middlecoff D.D.S. - Professional golfer, winner of 1955 Masters, 1949 and 1956 U.S. Opens
  • John J. Shea, Jr. M.D. - World-renowned ear surgeon
  • John M. Drummond - Bronze Star Recipient, fourth-highest combat award of the U.S. Armed Forces, Operation Iraqi Freedom
  • Dominic Dierkes - Actor, comedian, writer, founding member of Internet sketch comedy group Derrick Comedy
  • Jerry E. Pournelle, PhD. - Science fiction writer & winner of several awards in that field
  • William R. "Rusty" Robinson, M.D. - World-renowned gynecologic oncologist, member of physician band, N.E.D. (No Evidence of Disease)
  • Heath Alfonzo Mains- Noted concert pianist
  • Br. Armand Alcazar, FSC - University professor, co-author of Prayerways, a high school textbook
  • Br. John Johnston, FSC - Former Superior General of the Institute of the Brothers of the Christian Schools (Christian Brothers) [top leader over all the Lasallian schools in the world.]
  • David T. Popwell - President of Memphis area market for First Tennessee Bank; former Chairman, president and chief executive officer, SunTrust Banks in Memphis
  • Thomas W. Staed - Former president of Oceans Eleven Resorts Inc., current board member of International Speedway Corporation
  • Ryan Webb - African Film Maker of the Year, Democratic Republic of Congo
  • Bill Justis - Sun Recording Artist, music producer and film composer
  • Logan Forsythe - Current MLB 2nd baseman for the San Diego Padres organization, debuting in the majors on May 4, 2011


  1. ^ "CBHS Faculty List". Christian Brothers High School. 2008. Archived from the original on 2008-06-18. Retrieved 2008-09-14. 
  2. ^ a b "CBHS School Profile". Christian Brothers High School. 2009. Retrieved 2009-08-30. 
  3. ^ SACS-CASI. "SACS-Council on Accreditation and School Improvement". Retrieved 2009-06-23. [dead link]
  4. ^ Bolton, Patrick (2011). The Christian Brothers Band, "The Oldest High School Band in America" 1872-1947. Christian Brothers Archives: Master's Thesis. 
  5. ^ "A Tale of Three Memphians". Sports Illustrated. 2004-05-28. Retrieved 2007-11-14. 

External links

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