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Tenure of PLAS football coach Mario White ends just hours before semifinals
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Tenure of PLAS football coach Mario White ends just hours before semifinals

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Mario White’s tenure as head football coach and athletics director at Pike Liberal Arts School came to an abrupt halt Friday just hours before the Patriots were to play host to Glenwood in the AISA Class AAA state semifinal game.

The news was sent out to the media from a Pike Liberal Arts School email address Friday afternoon stating White had resigned and current head baseball coach and assistant football coach Rush Hixon would be taking over.

“Coach Mario White has resigned effective immediately,” the email read. “Coach Rush Hixon has been named interim Varsity Football Head Coach and Athletic Director and will lead our team through remainder of the playoff season.

“Our Patriots are playing in the semi-final tonight at 7pm in Delaney Kervin Stadium with Dewight Ward as our honorary captain. We encourage you to come tonight in support of Coach Hixon and our players.

“The team and coaching staff have worked extremely hard and deserve our prayers, support and a positive gameday atmosphere tonight.”

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The Dothan Eagle reached out to White through a text message and he responded, “We have no comment.”

White arrived at PLAS in February of 2020 and led the Patriots to the state championship title last season with a 10-2 overall record. He had replaced Gene Allen, who was relieved of his football duties in December of 2020.

Prior to arriving at the private school in Troy, White worked with the University of Alabama strength and conditioning program.

The Patriots were 10-1 this season going into the semifinal matchup against Glenwood, the program PLAS defeated 38-21 for the state championship last season. Glenwood had entered the state title game unbeaten.

Going into Friday’s game, the Patriots were ranked third in the state and coming off a 55-0 thrashing of Clarke Prep Academy in the quarterfinals last week.

The winner of the Pike Liberal Arts/Glenwood battle will meet the Tuscaloosa Academy/Lee-Scott Academy winner for the championship next Friday night at Cramton Bowl in Montgomery.


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