On this day in sports history

BY COLIN “BIG C” MACGUIRE

The Greenville Standard

 

Coach George (Shorty) White, was a legendary high school and college coach. Coach White was born Feb. 4, 1931 and died April 5, 2021.

Coach White watched football as a young boy at Legion Field. This is where Coach White’s love for football started.

He played at Phillips High in Birmingham and graduated in 1950. He then signed with Auburn in 1950 and was drafted into the military before his junior year.

After serving, Coach White transferred to Jacksonville State. After graduation, he got his start at Sylacauga, as an assistant. In 1959, a new school in Birmingham was started, Banks High School.

Coach White was an assistant the first two years. In 1961, Coach White became the head coach.

The first two years were rough. In their third season, they went 6-3. From that season until his last season in 1974, he had a winning season except the 1971 season which ended at 5-5.

The next three seasons, they won two state championships going 12-0-1, 13-0, 9-2.

34-2-1 was part of a 35 game unbeaten streak. The 1965 team went 10-0 and was named State Champions by the Birmingham News.

This was before the playoffs. 88 players signed to play college football. Bobby Johns, Johnny Musso, Larry Willingham, Mike Neel, Gary Rutledge, Jeff Rutledge and Rick Neal are some of the players who played for Coach White.

In 1975 Coach White moved to the college ranks and was hired at Alabama as the running backs coach.

Tony Nathan and Major Oglivie, along with others, were coached by Coach White. Timing was great; Alabama from 1975-80 won two national championships and four SEC championships with a record of 64-8.

Coach White is survived by his wife June, daughter Dianne, and sons Darryl and Gary. He also had numerous grandchildren, nieces and nephews.

Coach White was a fun person to be around. He was always laughing and smiling.

When it was time to practice and play he was intense. Coach White made a big impact on his players. He was a second father too them. RIP Coach White.

 

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