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  School Football over the past 100 seasons.

Amazing Seasons 

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          In 1966, under a federal court desegregation court order the citizens of Lowndes County banded together to form Lowndes Academy in Hayneville. The private school was the idea of Mac Champion the head football coach at Hayneville high school. He became the principle and head football coach at Lowndes Academy. 

         Champion had been a very successful football coach at Hayneville the past four seasons and put together teams that won 39-of-40 games. His team won the last 35 games they played between 1962-65. At Lowndes Academy, Champion saw a way to establish a winning program under his terms and conditions.

          Coach Champion was instrumental in the fund raising process that put together $80,000 to build the initial school. He donated the 10 acres of land where the school was built. The private school, with 210 students, opened in the fall of 1966 and immediately fielded a winning football team.

          The 1966 football schedule was comprised of teams from Tennessee, Georgia and three against Alabama teams. The Rebels rolled through the season with a perfect 9-0 record. In 1967 the Rebels again ran the tables with a 9-0 mark against all state schools.

          During the 1967 season, the Rebels were placed on probation for reported recruiting violations by the program. It mattered little in the end as the Rebels just continued to win. It was common knowledge white students were leaving the Montgomery County public schools to attend private schools in the area.

          Lowndes Academy entered the 1968 season having lost only one football game in the two seasons of fielding a team. Better yet, their head coach and principle had compiled a head coaching record of 56-2. The schedule was comprised of larger school as the smaller teams just refused to schedule the Rebels.

          Quarterback David Lyons set a state record by throwing seven touchdown passes against Marengo County in a 61-7 win. He completed 18-of-25 passes for 374 yards in the game. Lyons completed 99-of 167 passes for 2,116 yards in just ten games during the 1968 season. 

          The Rebels rolled though eight opponents by a combined score of 362-51 and grabbed a spot in the 1969 state playoffs. In the first round the Rebels throttled Hackleburg 54-13 to advance to the Class 1A state championship game.

          At the Cramton Bowl in Montgomery, the Rebels got the opportunity to show off their high scoring offense and destructive defense. They over powered the Woodland Bobcats 61-27 in a game that was never close. Lowndes rolled to a 42-7 halftime lead and coasted home for their first ever state title. 

          David Lyons led the Rebel attack from his quarterback position as he had done all season. Lyons passed for three touchdowns and ran for another. David Wayne Hollingshead also scored four touchdowns while Harry Ward picked up the other Rebel score.

          Lowndes Academy rolled up 221 yards rushing and 319 yards passing in the rout of the No. 1 ranked 1A team. The defense collected five interceptions to assist in the winning effort.

          The scheduling problem was magnified the following season as the Rebels found it near impossible to find opponents. They scheduled Mississippi powers Lee and Meridian high schools and Robert E. Lee of Montgomery, one of the largest schools in the state. They lost to Lee and Meridian after defeating the much larger Lee high school from Columbus, MS.

          The two losses prevented another playoff run as the top four ranked teams qualified for a playoff spot in 1969. It is likely the Rebels would have won another title if they had reached the playoffs. They trailed Lee of Montgomery 7-0 at the half before losing 36-0. Lee went on the win the Class 4A state championship in 1969.

          Coach Champion stepped down following the 1969 season at Lowndes Academy to accept the head coaching job at Monroe Academy. His five teams at Monroe Academy went 61-3 giving him a record of 136-7-1 in thirteen seasons as a head football coach.

Lowndes Academy

9/5 42 Catholic Montgomery . . 0
9/13 39 Dadeville . . . . . . . . . 0
9/20 33 Marion Military Institute . 0
9/27 61 Marengo County . . . . . 7
10/1 OPEN . . . . . . . . . . . . .
10/18 33 Valley . . . . . . . . . . . . 13
10/25 38 Linden . . . . . . . . . . . . 13
11/2 57 Daleville . . . . . . . . . 6
11/14 59 Dallas County . . . . . 12
11/9 OPEN . . . . . . . . . . . . .
11/23 54 Hackleburg * . . . . . . 13
11/29 61 Woodland # . . . . . . . . 27

477 10-0 91

* Playoff game
# State championship game

Amazing Seasons, a series on the greatest seasons in high school football history

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