Senior running back Ahmaud Taylor rushed for 189 yards on 22 carries and scored on runs of 28, 5 and 41 yards Friday night as T.R. Miller posted a 42-18 win over Escambia County.
The victory was a typical T.R. Miller victory – a typical Jamie Riggs-coached win.
This one, however, was more special to the many players who have suited up in the T.R. Miller gear since Riggs returned home as head coach in the fall of 1989. The victory was No. 288 for Riggs as the T.R. Miller coach and it was No. 300 in the career of this legendary coach who has been one of high school football’s strongest advocates through the years. It also grabbed this week’s AHSAA Prep Spotlight for Week 5 of the 2015 season.
Riggs, now in his 30th year as a head coach in the AHSAA and currently in his 27th year at T.R. Miller, has compiled a 300-79-0 career record with a .792 winning percentage, best of any coach in Alabama to reach 300 wins. He currently trails the state’s all-time leader Buddy Anderson of Vestavia Hills (315-133-0), who is 4-1 this season for the Class 7A Rebels, on the active list. Waldon Tucker (309-126-3) retired at Fayette County after the 2010 season and Glenn Daniel (302-169-16) retired at Luverne in 1993.
“I think about all the people who have been here in the past,” Riggs told Corey Williams of the Brewton Standard newspaper following Friday’s win. “All of the great players and coaches who put up the time and effort, and along with my family, all sacrificed a lot to allow me to this. It’s been a team effort among everybody, and I hope they enjoy and feel a part of this as well.”
Riggs reached the 300-win milestone faster than any other AHSAA coach. His 300th came in game 379. Anderson’s 300th came in game 422 of his coaching career, Tucker’s 300th was game 426 in his career, and Daniel’s 300th came in game 483 of his legendary career. Daniel coached 20 seasons, however, before the AHSAA’s first state playoffs began.
Riggs worked as an assistant coach at Winston County and McGill-Toolen before becoming head coach at Opp High School in 1986. His teams at Opp went 12-19 in three seasons. At T.R. Miller, the Tigers lost their first three games, then finished strong to win eight of the next nine in 1989 before losing to eventual 4A state champion Pike County 28-17 in the quarterfinals. The Tigers went 13-1 and reached the 4A state finals before losing to Deshler, but stormed back in 1991 to go 14-0 and win the state title.
During the 1990s, Riggs’ Tigers won 117 games, more than any other team in the state. His team also won 28 consecutive games from 1994-95. Every team during his tenure at Miller has qualified for the state playoffs.
The milestone win edged out a near-perfect passing performance by James Raines of Class 1A Berry in a 68-36 win over Shoals Christian. Raines was 27-of-30 passing for 380 yards and eight touchdowns and also completed two 2-point pass conversions to have a hand in 52 of his team’s 68 points.
SPECIAL RECOGNITION: Davidson High School celebrated homecoming Thursday by hosting Charles Henderson in a game won 34-14 by the Warriors. Coach Fred Riley’s team and school used that venue to demonstrate the “healing power of high school athletics” as they paid tribute to CHHS player Demario Harris, Jr., who collapsed and died in last year’s Charles Henderson-Davidson game at Troy.
Riley and his team paid tribute to Harris and his CHHS teammates with pre-game festivities at Ladd-Peebles Stadium in Mobile by wearing orange and blue in Harris’ honor. Davidson players ran through a banner dedicated to Harris. It read: “Self pride is for losers. Be a winner. Stand for something always. Have class and be humble.” The banner also had a drawing of a Trojan jersey with Harris’ name and No. 10 on it.
“It was something that begged to be done,” Riley told Ben Thomas of al.com. “I just happened to be a small part of it.”
Harris’ father was on hand for the ceremony. “This means so much,” said Demario Harris, Sr. “I never would have imagined that my son would have had the type of impact he’s had. I’m very proud of what he’s been able to accomplish. I can’t really explain how much it means for Davidson and our community and everyone to help me keep my son’s name alive.”
To read more about this tremendous act of character and kindness, go to the following link at al.com:
For other highlights from Week 5:
DILAN KILPATRICK,, FYFFE: Rushed for 342 yards and three touchdowns on 20 carries in a 34-7 win against Sylvania to set the Red Devils’ single-game school rushing record.
CODY MARTIN, REELTOWN: The Rebels’ workhorse running back had 36 carries for 231 yards and five touchdowns in the Rebels’ wild 53-42 win over Elmore County.
NIC ROLLO, COLD SPRINGS: Scored on six of his nine first-half carries and finished with 189 yards on 10 total rushes in a 50-7 win over of Vinemont. Rollo’s touchdowns covered 6, 16, 4, 3, 49 and 78 yards. Cold Springs’ offensive line paved the way for 362 total rushing yards. JORDAN BENTLEY, GUNTERSVILLE: The senior had 31 rush attempts for 320 yards and four touchdowns as the Wildcats beat Arab 37-7. It was the second time this season for Bentley to exceed 300 yards. His first (336 yards versus Madison County) set a new school single-game record. Bentley has rushed for 1,120 yards (224 yards per game) through the first five games of 2015. His career totals currently include 88 touchdowns and 4,938 yards rushing.
LA’MICAL PERINE, THEODORE: Ran for 292 yards and three touchdowns on 35 carries as Theodore beat Park Crossing 35-28.
JAMAL HOUREL, ANDALUSIA: The Bulldogs running back gained 291 yards rushing and scored three touchdowns in Andalusia’s 19-16 win over rival Opp. He now has 1,223 yards rushing this season with 15 touchdowns on 91 carries.
DESHON COWLING, PIKE COUNTY: Had 171 yards rushing and scored five touchdowns – three different ways – as Pike County (4-0) remained unbeaten and unscored on after beating Luverne 44-0. Coach Fred Holland’s Class 3A Bulldogs have averaged 53.3 ppg while outscoring four opponents 213-0 thus far this season. Cowling scored on runs of 27, 18 and 11 yards, returned a punt 35 yards for a score and hauled in a 7-yard pass for his fifth TD.
KOBE SMITH, WEST POINT: Accounted for 320 total yards and scored six touchdowns in a 49-0 homecoming victory versus Hanceville. The senior had 22 carries for 229 rushing yards and four TDs (24, 6, 36 and 6 yards) and added three catches for 91 yards and another two touchdowns (30 and 61 yards).
CHADARIUS TOWNSEND, TANNER: Rushed for 286 yards and four touchdowns as the Rattlers snapped defending state champion Maplesville’s 18-game winning streak 48-21. Townsend also completed 4-of-9 passes for 45 yards. Maplesville’s streak of 28 regular-season wins and 44-home wins also came to an end.
PEYTON GILLILAND, CLEVELAND: The senior quarterback was outstanding on both sides of the ball in the Panthers’ 35-7 win over J.B. Pennington. He rushed 16 times for 254 and two touchdowns (76, 45) and completed 3-of- 6 passes for 61 yards and a touchdown. On defense, he had five tackles, an interception, and a fumble recovery.
CHASE WILSON, GLENCOE: The senior quarterback totaled 234 yards combined offense and four touchdowns in the Yellow Jackets’ 42-7 win over Hokes Bluff. Wilson rushed for 125 yards and two scores on 16 carries and completed 6-of-12 passes for 109 yards and pair of TDs.
CALEB VINSON, FALKVILLE: Led Falkville to a 61-20 in over West Morgan with 233 yards rushing and two touchdowns.
MEMPHIS SISTRUNK, COTTONWOOD: Rushed for 202 yards and one score on 16 carries and caught the Bears' only two pass completions, both for touchdowns as the Bears defeated Barbour County 49-13. Teammate Jordan Gray added 133 yards rushing on nine carries with four touchdowns.
MILES STRICKLAND, BOB JONES: Picked up 207 rushing yards on 20 carries and scored three TDs in a 42-24 win over Florence. His touchdown runs covered 56, 54 and 12 yards.
KYLE HARRELL, CALERA: Rushed for 201 yards and two touchdowns on 13 carries as the Eagles beat Shelby County 34-14.
BLAKE ADAMS, HAYDEN: Adams, a senior fullback, rushed 16 times for 188 yards and three touchdowns (28, 17, 25 yards) in the Wildcats’ 43-6 victory over Lawrence County.
RILEY EAGAN, MARY MONTGOMERY: Had 5 carries for 186 yards and four touchdowns as the Vikings handed Baldwin County its first defeat 35-19. His TD runs were 1, 3, 39 and 69 yards.
SEAN LONG, SARALAND: Had 16 rush attempts for 163 yards and four touchdowns Sean Long ran for 163 yards and four touchdowns on just 16 carries as Saraland defeated Thomasville 42-14 on Friday night.
DYLAN McQUEEN, SCOTTSBORO: Rushed 18 times for 159 yards and two touchdowns in a 30-28 win over North Jackson. He also returned a kickoff 43 yards.
CAMERON THOMAS, LEE-HUNTSVILLE: Rushed for 139 yards and a TD on 15 passes and completed 7-of-12 passes for 104 yards and two scores to lead the Generals past Columbia 41-14.
HUNTER GRANT, WEST END: The senior quarterback had four carries for 128 yards and two touchdowns and was 2-of-4 passing for 41 yards and two more scores, all in the first half, as the Patriots beat Coosa Christian 71-0 to set a single-game school record for points scored. West End rolled up 527 total yards in the win.
SHAWN BOWDEN, WICKSBURG: Rushed for 176 yards on 24 carries with four touchdowns, including a 10-yard run on the first play of overtime and an ensuing two-point conversion, in a 29-21 win over Ariton. He added four tackles on defense.
AUSTIN HARRIS, FAIRVIEW: Ran for 134 yards and two touchdowns, including an 83-yard breakaway, in a 40-0 shutout of county-rival Holly Pond.
KALEB BARKER, PRICEVILLE: Completed 25-of-39 passes for 265 yards and four TDs (18, 38, 7 and 20 yards) in Priceville’s 36-14 win over Danville. Barker improved his season total to 17 TD passes and also added his 15th rushing TD of the season in the win.
AVERY HARRIS, MUNFORD: Passed for 308 yards and four touchdowns in a 42-28 win over Lincoln. Teammate Charles Smith added 199 yards rushing and two scores on 28 carries.
COLE GUFFEY, HAZEL GREEN: Led the Trojans to a 21-17 win over Fort Payne completing 13-of-20 passes for 273 yards and one score. He scored the game-winning TD on a 5-yard keeper.
BLAKE JOHNSON, MONTGOMERY CATHOLIC: Completed 8-of-12 passes for 269 yards and two touchdowns in the Knights’ 33-14 win over Holtville.
RAGAN ASHLEY, FAIRVIEW: The Aggies quarterback passed for 232 yards and four touchdowns, including a 40-yard touchdown connection to Noah Garnett, in a 40-0 win over Holly Pond.
DYLAN WIGGINS, RANBURNE: Was 17-of-20 passing for 225 yards and two touchdowns in a 42-0 win over Beulah.
TYREN DUPREE, CHEROKEE COUNTY: Completed 16-of-23 pass attempts for 212 yards and an 8-yard touchdown. He also rushed for 57 yards on 15 attempts with an 11-yard score and intercepted a pass late in the game to lead the Warriors to a 28-19 victory over Ohatchee.
JACOB FREE, BRANTLEY: Was 13-of-17 passing for 202 yards and five touchdowns – four to receiver Tommy Spivey – and the Bulldogs beat Highland Home 49-14.
JOSH DECKER, CEDAR BLUFF: Was 10-of-17 passing for 200 yards and had a 13-yard touchdown run in the Tigers' 28-26 win at Ragland.
CALEB KASSINGER, SAND ROCK: Completed 11-of-17 pass attempts for 194 yards and two touchdowns (4, 15 yards) in the Wildcats' 31-7 win at Crossville.
TRAE HARRIS, NORTH JACKSON: Was 12-of-24 passing for 190 yards and one touchdown in a 30-28 loss to Scottsboro.
DEVIN KIMBROUGH, SPARKMAN: Completed a game-winning 7-yard touchdown pass on fourth down with only four seconds remaining in the fourth quarter to lift the Senators past previously unbeaten Russellville 39-36. Kimbrough rushed for one TD.
DALEN MORRIS, BUCKHORN: Completed 8-of-16 passes for 176 yards and a touchdown (21 yards), and ran for an 18-yard score in a 31-30 win over J.O Johnson.
TANNER ALLEN, UMS-WRIGHT: Was 12-of-14 passing for 145 yards and three TDs and rushed for 57 yards as the Bulldogs downed Bayside Academy 34-0.
KENNON CASEY, G.W. LONG: The Rebels quarterback rushed for two touchdowns (4 and 3 yards) and threw for two touchdowns (6 and 45 yards), while also returning an interception 71 yards for a fifth score, in the Rebels' 43-12 win over Slocomb.
LANDON PRITCHETT, MONTGOMERY CATHOLIC: Snared three passes for 153 yards and two scores in a 33-14 win over Holtville.
ISAAC GREEN, BILLLINGSLEY: Had three receptions for 149 yards and a TD in the Bears’ 54-13 win over Prattville Christian.
JUSTIN McKNIGHT, CHEROKEE COUNTY: Caught seven passes for 101 yards, including an 8-yard touchdown, in the Warriors' 28-19 win over Ohatchee.
MALIK TALLEY, SCOTTSBORO: Caught four passes for 86 yards and 1 touchdown in a 30-28 win over North Jackson to become Scottsboro’s career leader in pass receiving yards (887 yards on 46 catches and 12 TDs). Talley is one receiving TD shy of tying the career record for TD catches.
KYRIQ McDONALD, JAMES CLEMENS: Had two interceptions, returning one 101 yards for a touchdown, and also blocked a punt that resulted in a touchdown as the Jets beat Mountain Brook 51-14. He also had nine tackles and returned three punts for 41 yards.
DEVONTAE WILLIAMS, OPP: Recorded 18 tackles, had a sack and fumble recovery in Opp’s 19-16 loss to Andalusia.
DANIEL THOMAS, LEE-MONTGOMERY: Had two interceptions, returning the first one 52 yards for a TD in the third quarter to put the Generals ahead for good en route to a 44-21 win over Northview.
ANDREAZ SPENCER, PAUL BRYANT: Had two interceptions on defense and five receptions on offense as the Stampede beat Central-Tuscaloosa 13-12.
CHARLIE BENTON, OPELIKA: Had two important interceptions in Opelika’s 27-21 road win over Central-Phenix City. The defensive back finished with eight tackles.
CLAY KELLEY, NEW BROCKTON: Had 16 tackles and an interception in the Gamecocks’ 20-13 win over previously unbeaten Providence Christian.
TRENT HATCHER, WICKSBURG: Recorded 17 tackles in the Panthers' 29-21 overtime win over Ariton.
DALTON YERBY, CULLMAN: Picked off a pass and broke up three others in a 34-6 home win over Fayette County. The senior also had seven tackles and pinned the Tigers inside their own 1-yard line on a booming punt. Teammate Justin Patterson added nine tackles, a sack for minus-16 yards and a fourth-down stop.
MARQUEZ JOHNSON, GENEVA: Had two interceptions on defense, returning one for a touchdown, and also forced a fumble on defense and added 103 yards rushing a touchdown on offense in a 34-23 win over Samson.
EMMANUEL JONES, HUEYTOWN: Intercepted a pass, returning it for a touchdown in the final minute of the game, to lift the Gophers to a come-from-behind 27-20 win over Pleasant Grove.
JOSH CRUMBLEY, HAYDEN: The junior defensive lineman had five tackles – three sacks and two others for loss – in the Wildcats’ 43-6 win over Lawrence County. The Wildcats defense limited Lawrence County to 44 total yards – including minus-1 yard rushing.
HUNTER VERHART, CORNER: Had 19 tackles in a 29-15 loss to Oak Grove.
BLAKE JOHNSON, ELBA: Had 16 tackles in a 28-7 win over Daleville.
AUSTIN FREEMAN, SCOTTSBORO: Made 7 tackles and had two pass interceptions in the Wildcats’ 30-28 win over North Jackson. Teammate Stephen Jackson added 14 tackles.
KYLE WALKER, G.W. LONG: Had 16 tackles, including one quarterback sack, in the Rebels' 43-21 win over Slocomb.
CHANDLER DAVIS, NORTHVIEW: Led the Cougars with 15 tackles in Northview’s 44-21 loss to Lee-Montgomery.
DARRIEN EVANS, FAIRFIELD: Led Fairfield’s defense with 10 tackles and scored one of the two TDs in the game as the Tigers beat Midfield 13-0.
STEFAN PALMER, AUTAUGAVILLE: Had 11 tackles on defense and 130 yards rushing on nine carries on offense as the Eagles beat Central-Hayneville 38-2.
HALL MORTON, OAK MOUNTAIN: Had two of the six interceptions managed by the Eagles defense in a 35-0 win over Briarwood. The defense also limited the Lion to 37 rushing yards.
SCOTTIE RIDGEWAY, JACKSON: Recovered a fumble and intercepted a pass as Jackson beat Demopolis 35-20.
GOOD HOPE DEFENSE: Forced eight turnovers in a 47-6 homecoming victory over Curry.