April 30, 2014 10:51:52 AM
The Pickens County High School football team will have to defend its Class 1A state title without its head coach.
On Monday, Patrick Plott started work as the new football coach and athletic director at Greenville (Ala.) High. Plott accepted the job offers April 17 and was approved by the school board that day. The timing was designed to put Plott in place for the start of spring football, which he kicked off Tuesday with more than 100 players.
"It was the right fit," Plott said. "There are great people in place and it is a great place to work."
Plott earned The Dispatch's West Alabama All-Area Coach of the Year honors for leading Pickens County to a 38-18 victory against Maplesville in the Alabama High School Athletic Association state title game. The victory capped a 15-0 season, the program's first in school history. The Tornadoes also had four players earn first-team All-State recognition on the Alabama Sports Writers Association Class 1A squad.
Greenville High, a Class 5A school, is in Butler County, and is about 30 minutes south of Montgomery. Plott said his wife is from Greenville, which makes the move that much easier. He said his wife and son would relocate at the end of the school year.
Plott, who played football at Carrollton High and went on to play for Bill Burgess at Jacksonville State, returned to Pickens County High in 2011 for his second stint as a coach at the school. A certification issue and the lack of a certified teaching position at the school resulted in Plott leaving the school after one season leading the football program. He also coached the boys basketball team at Pickens County and served as athletic director. Plott also has coached at Bullock County and Demopolis.
Plott said the jobs at Greenville High were appealing because he wanted to move to a higher level in the state's coaching ranks. The state of Alabama will move to seven classifications for 2014.
Last season, Greenville went 2-8 and 1-6 in Class 5A, Region 3. It won 10 games in 2011 and last won state titles in 1987 and 1994.
"The school has a lot of tradition, and I just wanted to go there and continue that tradition," Plott said. "I enjoyed my time at Pickens County High. The administration there was good to me and the fans were great supporters of what we did. Most of all I enjoyed the kids. They were hard-working kids who were willing to go to work.
"I am most proud of the kids and the way they bought into what we brought to the program. They worked hard every day and on friday nights and just went out there and had fun."
Follow Dispatch sports editor Adam Minichino on Twitter @ctsportseditor.
Adam Minichino is the Sports Editor for The Commercial Dispatch.
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