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Basic Eligibility

     

MIKE BATTLES Graduated from Sylacauga High School and the University of Southern Mississippi. Beginning his football coaching career as an assistant coach in 1970, he became a head coach in 1973. His teams have compiled a 277-161-2 record (through 2013) in coaching stops at Pell City, Irwin County (Ga.), Walter Wellborn, Hueytown, Pascagoula (Miss.), Gautier (Miss.), Biloxi (Miss.) and Handley. He led Irwin County (Ga.) to a 13-0 record and the Georgia Class 1A state championship in 1975 and directed Handley to a perfect 15-0 record in 2011 to win the AHSAA Class 3A state title. His Wellborn teams had back-to-back 10-win seasons in 1988-89. The winningest coach in school history at Walter Wellborn and Handley, he led his Handley teams from a 1-9 mark in 2006 to 11-2, 10-3, 13-1 and 15-0 records the next four years.

 

RICHARD ‘DICKIE’ BROWN - Graduated from Smiths Station High School and Jacksonville State University. He holds a master’s degree in administration from Troy University and an education specialist degree from Auburn University. Brown began his education career at Cleburne County High School in 1969 where he was head baseball coach for two seasons. He moved to Beauregard High School in 1972 and coached the baseball team to a 66-25 record, the boys’ basketball team to an 84-42 mark and the football team to a 35-15 record. Serving as principal at Beauregard since 1978, he was named Alabama Principal of the Year in 2006. He has served on the AHSAA Central Board of Control and was the Class 4A Making A Difference Award winner in 2013.He was inducted into the school’s Hall of Fame in 2006 and the football stadium and athletic complex were named in his honor.

 

JIM GARNER - Graduated from Pleasant Home High School and Troy State College. He started his career as a teacher and boys’ basketball coach in 1964 with stints at T.R. Miller, New Hebron (Miss.) and New Brockton before becoming head coach at L.B. Wallace Community College from 1971-84. He then moved to his alma mater, Pleasant Home, and served as principal and athletic director from 1984-2008. Garner oversaw expansion of the athletic program to include softball, volleyball and football. The boys’ basketball program won back-to-back Class 1A state titles in 2001 and 2002. Vast improvements were made in the school’s facilities, including a new field house, new football field and renovation and expansion of the gymnasium. He served on the AHSAA Central Board of Control and District 2 Board from 1997-2010. Garner is currently the mayor of the town of Carolina.

 

MAJOR LANE - Graduated from Montgomery’s Robert E. High School and Alabama State University. He earned his masters and doctorate at Troy University and a second masters in Theology from the Birmingham Theological Seminary. He began his teaching and coaching career in 1982 at Pike County High School as the junior varsity basketball coach where his team went 14-1. He moved to Ariton High School from 1984-87 before returning to Pike County as head boys coach from 1987-93. He also served as the defensive coordinator in football as the Bulldogs won state championships in 1988 and 1989. He became the head basketball coach at Goshen High School in 1993 where his teams compiled a 187-46 record through 2002. He went into administration in 1997 as assistant principal and continues in that role today. Lane currently serves as pastor of Mt. Carmel Missionary Baptist Church.

 

ALVIN MOORE - Graduated from Birmingham’s Carver High School and Alcorn State University. He also earned a master’s degree from Alabama State University. He was the longest tenured coach in the Birmingham City Schools, serving as head basketball coach at Phillips High School and later Carver from 1974-2013. Moore’s teams won more than 600 games and made four appearances in the Final 48. Hundreds of student-athletes he coached received scholarships in basketball, football and track. He coached in the Alabama North-South All-Star Game twice (1975 and 2003) and was named Class 5A Coach of the Year in 1993. He was the Birmingham City Coach of the Year in 1982 and received the Coca-Cola Outstanding Service Award. An All-Conference offensive tackle, he was Inducted into the Alcorn State Football Hall of Fame in 2006 and also was named USA Man of the Year by the National Baptist Convention in 2011.

 

LARRY MORRIS - Graduated from Scottsboro High School and Jacksonville State University. Spending his entire teaching and coaching career in Scottsboro, he served as an assistant football coach from 1974-1991 and became head coach from 1991-2004–the longest tenure in school history. His teams compiled a 90-66 overall record and won five area or region titles. He coached in the Alabama-Mississippi football game in 2001 and in the AHSAA North-South game in 1998. He was also head track coach for eight years and assistant wrestling coach for 10. He served as athletic director from 2005 until his retirement in 2012 and was named AHSAA Athletic Director of the Year in 2012. Scottsboro teams captured 17 state titles under his watch. He also served on the AHSAA District 8 Board from 1999-2012 and the Central Board of Control from 2007-12. Scottsboro named its new football field house in his honor in 2013.

DONNIE ROBERTS - Graduated from Tremont High School (Miss.) and Delta State University (Miss). The Mississippi native spent his first 11 years at Tremont, and then moved to Red Bay (Ala.) High School where he has been the girls’ head coach since 1983. His Red Bay teams have posted a 664-224 mark and his overall coaching record is 806-351 (through 2013). Under Roberts, Red Bay won the Class 3A state championship in 1993 and Class 2A titles in 1997 and 2001. He also coached Red Bay to the Class 2A girls’ state track title in 2001 and has coached softball since 1983. He has also served as a football assistant coach. He coached the Alabama team in the 2001 Alabama-Mississippi All-Star Basketball Game and was named Class 2A Coach of the Year in 1987, 1993, 2000 and 2001. He is a member of the Franklin County Sports Hall of Fame

DR. JAMES ROBINSON - A native of New Orleans and a 1985 graduate of the Louisiana State University School of Medicine in New Orleans, Dr. Robinson has been an integral part of the AHSAA’s Medical Advisory Board since 2003. He has played an important role in the AHSAA’s medical health and safety policies and helped write the current concussion law that now governs all athletic events in Alabama. A family practice physician in Tuscaloosa, he serves as the University of Alabama football team physician and provides the same service for many high schools in the Tuscaloosa area. Dr. Robinson also developed the AHSAA pre-participation physical exam form used by all student-athletes since 1993. He has been a leader in developing health and safety practices for Alabama high schools and is an annual clinician at the AHSAA Summer Conference.  He supervises athletic trainers for DCH Health System and has been its Medical Director for Sports Medicine since 1989.

NANCY SHOQUIST - Graduated from Fairhope High School and Troy State University and also holds a master’s degree from the University of South Alabama. She is one of a handful of state volleyball coaches whose teams have won more than 1,000 matches with a career record of 1,067-386 (through 2013). Shoquist served as volleyball coach at St. Paul’s Episcopal School from 1982-2003 before moving to Murphy High School where she continues to coach. Her St. Paul’s teams won volleyball state titles in 1984, 1985, 1986, 1992 and 1995 and were runners-up in 1990, 1991, 1993, 1994, 1997 and 1998. Her Murphy teams have reached the state semi-finals once and the quarter-finals four times. She also coached five St. Paul’s tennis teams to state titles and seven others finished second. She was the first female to be inducted into the Fairhope High School Athletic Hall of Fame in 1990 and has received numerous coaching awards for volleyball and tennis.

 

MIKE SMITH - Graduated from Hueytown High School and Jacksonville State University and also holds a master’s degree. He started the girls’ basketball program at Decatur High School and remained for 28 seasons. His teams compiled a 624-225 record with five state championships (1990, 1991, 1992, 1995 and 2000) and three runner-up finishes (1987, 1996 and 2001). Smith’s 1992 team was ranked No. 2 in the nation and the 2000 squad finished 34-0. He had three other teams that won 30-plus games and retired as the winningest girls’ basketball coach in AHSAA history. He coached in the Alabama-Mississippi All-Star Basketball Game three times (1992, 1995, and 2000) and also coached volleyball for six years and softball for nine. An outstanding classroom teacher, he taught advanced placement government and politics for more than 20 years. He is a member of the Morgan County Sports Hall of Fame. 

TONY STALLWORTH - Graduated from J.F. Shields High School in Beatrice and Huntingdon College. He also attended Lomax-Hannon Junior College in Greenville. He began his career as a teacher and coach at Lomax-Hannon and then at Monroe Senior High School. He moved to Brantley High School in 1988 and was the boys’ head basketball coach from 1990-2005 where his teams compiled a 298-47 record and won three straight state championships (1993, 1994 and 1995). He was named 1A Coach of the Year in 1993 and 1994 and 2A Coach of the Year in 1995. He also coached Brantley’s Junior High team to a perfect 48-0 record from 1988-90. Stallworth served Brantley High School as its principal from 2005-08 and later worked in various roles with the Crenshaw County School System before becoming the Associate Executive Director of the AHSAA in 2011. He was inducted into the Huntingdon College Hall of Fame in 2013. 

EUGENE WEATHERLY - After serving in the Army in World War II, Eugene Weatherly returned to Gadsden’s Carver High School and captained the football and basketball teams before graduating in 1948. He graduated from Alabama State in 1952 and earned a master’s degree from Georgia State. He began his teaching and coaching career at Hatcher High School in Cherokee County in 1953. He was the first coach in school history and was the only coach the school ever had. He was named Coach of the Year by the Northeastern Interscholastic Athletic Association twice (1961 and 1968). His 1961 boys’ basketball team was unbeaten until losing in the state finals and his football teams won district titles in 1961 and 1967. He coached Anniston’s Cobb Avenue High School basketball team from 1971-74 and ended his coaching career with 21 years at the Georgia School for the Deaf. His 1990 team won the Mason-Dixon basketball tournament. 

AHSAA
 

Enrollment Rule - A student must be enrolled within the first 20 days of a semester as a regular student in the school system where the student will participate. The 20-day requirement may be waived under extenuating circumstances. Note: A regular student is one who is enrolled at the school and is taking six new subjects of work.

Age Rule - A high school student who has reached his/her 19th birthday before Aug. 1 is ineligible. Any junior high (ninth grade) student who has reached his/her 16th birthday before Aug. 1 is ineligible. Any middle school student who has reached his/her 15th birthday before Aug. 1 is ineligible.

Eight Semester Rule - A high school student may be eligible only eight semesters in attendance after entering the ninth grade. School attendance of 15 days or more of any semester is counted as a semester.

A student can be eligible only four fall semesters and four spring semesters after entering the ninth grade.  The last two semesters, the seventh and eighth of a four-year high school and fifth and sixth of a three-year high school, must be consecutive.

A junior high student may be eligible only three seasons in any one sport. A middle school student may be eligible only two seasons in any one sport.

Participation Rule - No student may participate in any one sport for more than six years (seasons) after entering the seventh grade or for more than three seasons after entering the 10th grade. A student who officially participates in one contest of a sport is credited with one year of participation in that sport.

Outside Participation Rule - A student who is a member of any school athletic team (grades 7-12) may not participate (includes practice) on a non-school team in the same sport during the school season of that sport. Also, a member of any school athletic team may not participate in an outside sport activity in the same sport during the school season of that sport.

Private individual instruction is not considered an outside sports activity. A team's season begins the day of that team's first contest and ends when that team's season has been completed.

A student who violates this rule becomes ineligible to compete on that school team or in that school sports activity for the remainder of that school season. Any student who participates on an outside team after the school sport season begins is ineligible to join that school team for the remainder of the season.

Fifty Percent Rule- Participation (includes practice) during the school year by students from any high school team (varsity and junior varsity/B-team) on a non-school team during the off-season is limited to 50 percent of the number of players required to play the game of that sport (i.e., three in basketball, six in soccer, five in baseball, etc.)  A freshman team is considered a junior high team.

Note: In each sport, only the specified number of students participating on a non-school team during the school year may be placed on the same high school team roster the following season. Those students cannot be interchanged on the school team roster.

The rule does not apply to seniors who have completed their high school eligibility in that sport nor to middle and junior high school students that will not play on any high school team the following season.

Independent Rule - A student who is a member of any school swimming, track, cross country or wrestling team may participate as an independent in two outside activities on non-school days during the season of that sport. The schedule of the school team, including the championship play, takes precedent over any outside participation by an individual. (Members of tennis and golf teams are exempt from this rule.)

A member of a school soccer team may participate in one Olympic Development Program evaluation period per month as long as there is no loss of school time. The evaluation must be under the guidance of ODP.

Amateur Rule - Only amateurs are eligible. An amateur is one who does not use his/her knowledge or athletics or athletic skill for gain. A student may not receive an award of any kind having a monetary value of more than 50 dollars-other than medals, trophies, plaques or championship rings.

Academic Rule - Students entering the 10th, 11th and 12th grades must have passed during the last two semesters in attendance and summer school, if applicable, at least six new Carnegie units with a minimum composite numerical average of 70 in those six units. Four core courses must be included in those units passed and averaged. English, mathematics, science and social studies are core curriculum courses.

Students entering the 8th and 9th grades must have passed during the last two semesters in attendance and summer school, if applicable, at least five new subjects with a minimum composite numerical average of 70 in those five subjects.

Students entering the 7th grade for the first time are eligible.

Students may regain eligibility at the end of the first semester by meeting the same requirements listed above during their last two semesters in attendance and summer school, if applicable. All first semester work used in regaining eligibility must be completed by the fifth day of the second semester.

Transfer Rule - A student is eligible in the school zone in which his/her parents reside (public, private or parochial schools). Any student who completes one year's attendance at a school outside his/her home school zone and fulfills all other requirements becomes eligible in that school. (This does not apply to foreign exchange students.)

A student whose parents make a bona fide move completely out of one school zone into another school zone may transfer all his/her rights and privileges to the member school that serves the area where the parents reside.

The following factors are basic guidelines for determining a bona fide move:
a. The household furniture of the family must be moved into an unoccupied house or
    apartment.
b. All principal members of the family must reside in the new place of residence
c.  The original residence should be closed, rented or dis­posed of and not used by the   family.
d. Nine months at the new residence will be required to make a move bona fide.
    Note: If a family moves into a now school zone and remains there for less than nine months, the move will not be considered bona fide and the family's child who is enrolled in the new school zone becomes ineligible there the day the family leaves the new school zone.
     The student remains ineligible for a full calendar year from the date the family moved out of the new zone. However, if the student did not participate in athletics, the period of ineligibility will be 12 months from the date of the student's enrollment.

Custody or legal guardianship set up with anyone will not establish immediate athletic eligibility.

Divorce: The eligibility of a student whose parents are divorced is determined by the following:

(a) If there has been a divorce or a legal separation in a family and sole or physical custody has been awarded by the court granting the divorce to one of the parents, the athletic eligibility of the student will be established at the school that serves the area where that parent resides.
       Note: If joint custody has been awarded and a transfer is involved, the student must attend the new school for one year before becoming eligible.

(b) If it becomes necessary at a later date for the student to reside with the other parent, the move will be accepted as a bona fide move if the court that granted the divorce changes the custody to this parent. This type of move will be accepted for immediate athletic eligibility purposes only one time. Therefore, if a student subsequently decides to return and reside with the first parent in a different school zone, the student will be ineligible for a period of one year.

Home Rule - A student attending a member school outside his/her school zone may return to his/her home school (where the parents reside) and be eligible at the beginning of any school year if all other requirements are met.

Overlapping School Zones - A student whose parents reside in an area served by more than one school lives in the zone of each school, thus in overlapping school zones. A student who changes schools within these overlapping school zones is ineligible for one year at the new school.

Custody or legal guardianship assigned to anyone (including relatives) will not establish immediate athletic eligibility.

Home Rule - A student attending a member school outside his/her school zone may return to his/her home school (where the parents reside) and be eligible at the beginning of any school year if all other requirements are met.

Overlapping School Zones - A student whose parents reside in an area served by more than one school lives in the zone of each school, thus in overlapping school zones. A student who changes schools within these overlapping school zones is ineligible for one year at the new school.

Practice – A team or individual must have at least three weeks of practice for a sport before engaging in any interscholastic competition.

Outside the sports season during the school year (includes the school day), no coach or non-faculty coach from a school’s staff in any sport may hold organized practice or competition in that sport for students from his/her school or feeder school(s). The only exceptions are the allowable fall evaluation periods for spring sports and the spring practice periods for football, basketball and volleyball.

A Fall Evaluation Period for each spring sport is permitted for a maximum five days in a consecutive 10-school day calendar period anytime during the first semester with all students allowed to participate.

During the school year, exclusive of allowable dates, a school’s gymnasium and other facilities may not be open after school for practice and no balls or equipment of any sport may be used to develop skills.

Use of School Facilities: During the school year, exclusive of allowable dates, a school’s gymnasium and other facilities may not be open after school for practice and no balls or equipment of any sport may be used to develop skills.

Weight training and conditioning programs are exempt from these restrictions.

During an Athletic Physical Education Period, a ball of any sport may be used but no instruction can be given.