This is an opinion piece.
This season, the football teams at T.R. Miller in Brewton and Fayette County became the first in state history to reach 700 wins.
According to the Alabama High School Football Historical Society, the winningest programs in The Reporter’s coverage area are Guntersville with 620, Fyffe with 553 and Albertville with 524.
Alabama High School Hall of Fame coach Waldon Tucker came out of retirement last year to retake the reins of Fayette County’s program. The Tigers’ milestone 700th win was also the 317th of his legendary career. He’s 317-141-3, including 234-104 at Fayette County.
Tucker ranks fourth all-time in Alabama behind Vestavia Hills’ Buddy Anderson (346-160), Terry Curtis of UMS-Wright in Mobile (328-92) and Danny Horn of Central Clay (327-90).
Anderson is retired, as is Jamie Riggs of T.R. Miller, who shares fifth all-time with a 316-101 record.
Riggs is tied for fifth with legendary Fyffe head coach Paul Benefield, who owns a 316-53 record in 30 seasons. Coach Benefield’s 85.6 winning percentage is the best in AHSAA history.
What the Red Devils have accomplished under his guidance is incredible, but he won’t talk about it unless you ask. He stays focused on helping his team improve day to day so it will be well-prepared to tackle its next opponent.
During a July interview with Coach Benefield, we talked about how he expects his players to conduct themselves on and off the field.
“My kids are going to be good sports because I’m telling them they’re going to be good sports, and I ain’t going to have it no other way,” he said.
“People don’t understand Fyffe. It’s a throwback. If I tell you to do something and you’re a kid, you’re going to do it, and people don’t like that. I’m old-school, where kids are meant to be seen and not heard. So when you come in this field house, there’s not going to be a lot of noise in here anytime.”
If you’re a high school football fan and you’ve never watched Fyffe play, I encourage you to make the drive to Paul Benefield Stadium/Ridgeway-Long Field and catch a game. You’ll be glad you did.
500 wins for Sullivan
I had the opportunity to cover Lindsay Sullivan’s career as both a player and coach at Boaz High School.
Lindsay, who is now the head volleyball coach at Ashville, posted the 500th victory of her career last weekend when the Bulldogs won the silver bracket of the Fort Payne Invitational. Congratulations to Lindsay on her achievement.
Her Ashville team is just outside the top 10 in the latest Class 4A poll. The Bulldogs compete in Area 10 against Etowah and Oneonta
Shannon J. Allen is publisher for The Reporter. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.