By JIMMY WIGFIELD
Hall of Fame coach Steve Mask, who led St. Paul’s to four state football championships, has agreed to take the head coach’s job at Theodore, multiple sources told the Call News.
Mask, 66, will leave Pell City after going 1-9 in his only season there and will succeed Eric Collier, who resigned in February to become the director of football development at the University of South Alabama.
Mask said Wednesday morning he could not comment. His hiring must be approved by the Mobile County School Board.
Mask never had a losing season at St. Paul’s, going 110-25 in 10 years and winning the Class 5A state championship in 2014, 2015, 2017 and 2020. The Saints finished 15-0 in 2014 and 2020.
Mask, a native of Muscle Shoals, is 211-107 overall in 27 years as a head coach in Alabama, including jobs at Bradshaw, Buckhorn and Colbert County. He was inducted into the Alabama High School Athletic Association Hall of Fame in 2020.
Mask has had only seven losing seasons in 27 years. His teams have had 15 straight winning seasons, been in the playoffs 15 straight years and won seven region championships. His St. Paul’s teams were 29-6 in the playoffs and Mask is 42-16 overall in the postseason.
Mask will inherit a Theodore program Collier built into one of the state’s best. He led the Bobcats to six straight playoff appearances, including the best season in school history when they finished 13-1 and lost to eventual Class 6A state champion Saraland in the 6A semifinals last November. Theodore was 33-5 in the last three seasons under Collier, who also had 82 college signees and 33 all-state football players in his 10 years there.
At Theodore, Mask will compete in 6A Region 1 against his former team, St. Paul’s, and state champion Saraland, which will almost certainly be the preseason favorite to win a second straight Blue Map this fall.