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AHSFHS Article Series

   The best of the best in Alabama High   
  School Football over the past 100 seasons.

Most Playoff Appearances

(Updated 12/26/2023)

          Our list of coaches with the most football playoff appearances is very similar to our list of coaches with the most wins. The same names are on both lists in close to the same order near the top.

          Over the years qualifying for the playoffs has become easier than it once was prior to 1984. The current playoff system allows roughly one half the teams in each classification to qualify for the playoffs. That is why most of the coaches on our list are active this season or recently retired.

Coach Buddy Anderson
          Qualifying for the playoffs does not carry the same significance it once did but it is still the first goal of every team taking the field each season.

          Two active coaches are tied at the top our list Danny Horn of Central Clay County and  Terry Curtis of UMS-Wright both have taken their respective teams to the playoffs a total of thirty-two times during their careers. In 2023 they broke a three -way tie with our third place coach.

          Coach Buddy Anderson of Vestavia Hills resides in third place with thirty-one playoff appearances in his forty-three year football coaching career. Paul Benefield and Trent Taylor are next with thirty seasons in which they have led their teams to the post season.

          Below is a list of the coaches with at least twenty-four playoff appearances during their high school football coaching careers.

Playoff Appearances  
Coach Teams Appearances Titles
Danny Horn Clay County, Benjamin Russell, Central Clay County 32 8
Terry Curtis Shaw, Murphy, UMS-Wright 32 8
Buddy Anderson Vestavia Hills 31 2
Trent Taylor Kinston, Straughn, Andalusia 30 1
Paul Benefield Sylvania, Fyffe 30 7
Jamie Riggs Opp, T.R. Miller, Houston Academy 29 4
Hugh Fountain W.S. Neal, Escambia Academy, Charles Henderson 28 2
Glenn Vickery Mobile Christian, Davidson, Daphne 28 2
Robby James Catherine Ac., Morgan Ac., Faith Ac., Marengo Ac. 28 9
Waldon Tucker Demopolis Academy, Gordo, Fayette County 28 1
Fred Yancey Briarwood 27 3
Billy Hamilton Grove Hill Academy, Clarke Prep 27 5
Steve Smith Piedmont, Cedar Bluff 27 5
David Powell McAdory 26 0
Spence McCracken Montgomery Academy, Lee Montgomery, Opelika 26 3
Randy Ragsdale Trinity 25 1
Jackie O'Neal Reeltown 25 2
Robert Higginbotham Mountain Brook, Shades Valley, Tuscaloosa County 25 1
Dale Pruitt Albertville, Plainview, Ft. Payne, Pisgah 25 0

David Parker

Great Moments in Alabama High School Football History

Thomasville scored 54 points against Gulf Shores in the first quarter of a game in 2003. They managed to hang on for an 81-14 win.