By Wil Crews
Twelve major contributors to Alabama prep athletics were selected for induction into the 30th class of the Alabama High School Sports Hall of Fame on March 15, including Auburn High and Auburn University alum, Toney Pugh.
Pugh, 61, graduated from Auburn High School in 1976 and Auburn University in 1982. He served as an assistant football and head wrestling coach at Auburn High and Hewitt-Trussville High. His team at Hewitt won two state championships, had 10 straight playoff appearances and made one Class 6A trip to the state finals at Legion field. He was also the offensive coordinator and assistant head coach at Hewitt. From there, Pugh began to really build his legacy, starting football programs from the ground up at Clay-Chalkville in 1996, and Oak Mountain in Shelby County in 1999. Pugh then pivoted back to head wrestling coach – while also serving as the football team’s offensive line coach – when he moved to Spain Park in 2004. He finished out his coaching career at Hoover and Lassiter (Georgia), before becoming the Executive Director of the Birmingham Athletic Partnership in 2010, a role that he has remained in since.
While Pugh has served in his role with BAP, he has provided support and professional development for the coaches and teams for all the schools in the Birmingham City School System.
Additionally, Pugh found time to become one of AHSAA’s most outstanding wrestling officials in the process. He has worked the AHSAA State Wrestling Championship as an official for the last decade.
Other accomplishments by Pugh include: coaching in the North-South All-Star football game in 1999, serving as defensive coordinator in the Atlantic-Mississippi Game in 2000, serving on the AHSAA Football Coaches Committee and on the Directors of the Alabama Football Coaches Association.
Other inductees include: administrator Luke Hallmark; football coaches Carrol Cox, Steve Mask and Fred Yancey; basketball coaches Tommy Lewis and Yvonne Simmons; track coaches Aaron Goode and Keith Wilemon; wrestling coach Joseph Dasaro; soccer coach Rick Grammar; and coach/administrator Samuel ‘Hamp’ Lyon, who was chose in the old timer category.