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Jess Lanier’s Coach Carrol Cox was selected as one of the twelve major contributors to prep athletics in Alabama for induction into the 30th class of the Alabama High School Sports Hall of Fame. The 2019 class, which includes an “old-timer,” will be enshrined at a banquet held at the Montgomery Renaissance Hotel and Spa Convention Center on March 16, 2020.

The first class was inducted in 1991. These 12 in the Class of 2020 will run the total inducted into the Alabama High School Sports Hall of Fame to 365.

Coach Carrol Cox was a 1968 Jackson High School graduate and member of Samford University’s 1971 National Championship team. Cox coached from 1973 to 2000 at Jess Lanier High School in Bessemer – serving as head football coach and athletic director the final 21 years compiling a 162-77-2 overall record with the Purple Tigers.

His teams reached the state playoffs 14 times, including two trips to the state finals. His 1990 team was 12-3 and won the Class 6A state championship beating Murphy 22-0 at Legion Field. His teams had just two losing seasons but made the playoffs one of those years. After retiring in Alabama, he continued teaching and coaching in Georgia.

Cox, an old-school coach who had some of the top rushing teams in AHSAA history thanks to his tenacious wishbone offensive scheme, is the winningest head football coach in Bessemer school history. He coached in the Alabama-Mississippi All-Star Classic in 1990, has been a clinician at football coaching clinics across the Southeast, and sent a large number of his players to Division I and Division II college programs during his coaching tenure.

Also selected for induction in the 30th class of the Alabama High School Sports Hall of Fame : administrator Luke Hallmark; football coaches Steve Mask and Fred Yancey; basketball coaches Tommy Lewis and Yvonne Simmons; Track coaches Aaron Goode and Keith Wilemon; wrestling coach Joseph Dasaro; soccer coach Rick Grammar; wrestling official Toney Pugh, who was also an outstanding wrestling coach and football coach; and coach/administrator Samuel ‘Hamp’ Lyon, who chosen in the old-timer category.

Sponsors of the Hall of Fame program are the Alabama High School Athletic Directors & Coaches Association (AHSADCA) and the AHSAA. The corporate partners include Alabama Power, ALFA, Cadence Bank, Coca-Cola, Encore Rehabilitation, Future Ones, Jack’s, TeamIP, and Wilson Sporting Goods.