Football Legend Carl Madison, 77, Returns To Coaching

January 23, 2009

Legendary football coach Carl Madison is returning to sidelines as the offensive coordinator for the Tate Aggies. From his first coaching job at Ernest Ward High School at age 26, Madison went on to become one of America’s most winning coaches.

carlmadison10.jpgMadison, age 77,  is 326-129-7 over a 45 year coaching career, making him number two on Florida’s all-time coaching victories list and in the top 30 in the entire nation. He coached Tate to a state championship in 1980, and took the Pine Forest Eagles to two state championships in 1987 and 1988. The 1988 Eagle team was named as national champions by USA Today, and Madison earned the title of the National High School Football Coach of the Year. All in all, he coached at five different Florida High Schools including Ernest Ward, plus three out of state schools.

His football days began early at Escambia County High School in Atmore where he played tailback under Coach Herbert Barnes from 1945 to 1947, making him one of Atmore’s semi-famous “Barnes Boys” with 30 straight wins. After a stint in the Army, from 1950 to 1952, Madison  played college ball for Texas Tech and Troy State Teachers College in the mid-1950’s.

Fresh out of college, Madison coached for four years beginning in 1957 at Ernest Ward High School in Walnut Hill. He moved to Milton High in 1961, coaching them to a state championship and 34 straight victories. He then took a coaching job at a Georgia High School, losing a state championship game in 1968.

Madison joined the coaching staff at Tate in 1971 on his way to winning that 1980 state championship. He left Tate in 1983, heading to Pensacola High for a couple of years. Then it was off to Pine Forest and those back-to-back state championships. He coached at an Albany, Georgia, school, another 10 years at Milton High and another short period at PHS during the period from 1989 until 2002.

In 2002, he took the head coach job at the small Jackson Academy in Alabama. The 71-year old took over a team that had gone 0-10 prior to his arrival. He lost his first two games at Jackson, but he went on to win the state championship. The following year, Jackson was undefeated and won another state championship.

Madison will continue to live in Atmore. On March 1, he will begin working with the Aggies, which finished with a 4-7 record last year.


18 Responses to “Football Legend Carl Madison, 77, Returns To Coaching”

  1. Mike Miller on February 14th, 2017 1:19 pm

    Coach Maddog, is what we called him. I played for him from 1993-95. Played QB and DB and we won the district championship in 1994 against Escambia. I was the MVP for that game and overall MVP in 1995. I went to the Navy, and then to play for Troy State and letter in D-1A football. I owe it all to Coach Madison, and God! He was a hard nose old fashioned Coach that we need more of these pansy days.

  2. Marcail on September 1st, 2016 4:39 am

    Marcel Hudson play for Milton Panthers the season of 1996 in 1997 I want to see Femmes of the football games find me anywhere

  3. Ben Howze on March 1st, 2016 10:02 am

    I played for Booker T Washington High School 1987-88. Good Luck Coach

    Ben Howze

  4. Ben Howze on March 1st, 2016 12:01 am

    Congratulations Coach. I remember this man very well. I played quarterback on that 1987-88 team when you guys beat us 13-12 to knock us out of the district championship. I don’t think I will ever forget that night. Best of Luck Coach I’m pulling for you. Ben Howze

  5. Gil Thomas on January 18th, 2015 11:44 pm

    I coached with Carl for two years. Those two years we won the state championship. Carl and I are still close friends. He coaches the way you should coach,” no favoritism,no politics”. I’ve had the honor to coach with great men and Carl is at the top. He creats men out of spoiled brats and boys. I still talk to carl about once month and will probably in touch even more so since it looks like my oldested is gonna be playing college ball in his home town. I really love Carl and Grace. Carl taught me a lot about footbLl as well as life. He truly is a great man. Thank you so much Carl for hiring me as your defensive coordinator those years. See you soon.


  6. Jason Davis on September 29th, 2014 3:16 pm

    I played on the 2 State Championship Teams, A National Championship Team, for Clemson University and had a cup of coffee in the pros. I was never better prepared than I was under his tutelage. He coached to the talents of his players and got every ounce that was in there to get out. What a great coach and even better man! He has influenced and inspired me in ways that I couldn’t effectively communicate. He deserves all of the accolades given and then some!

  7. Ian Cruikshank on January 21st, 2014 11:40 am

    Coach Madison left an impression on me although I still think if he looks back at our playoff game he would have kicked that Field Goal versus Gainsville in the state playoffs, with Lawrence Tynes as our kicker, but as he told me if Marcel Hudson would have caught that pass we would have scored a touchdown. Good to see your back in business. Thought about you the other day and this is where I landed when I looked you up. He never had try outs he had wear outs and those that were left were his team. Even the most talented players did not make the grade if they did not have the heart.

  8. Charlie Colston on July 15th, 2011 2:26 am

    Congrats to Coach Madison. My dad took me to many games in the 1968 football season he coached at Forest Park High School in Forest Park Georgia. He had one of the best records in his tenure at the school. He took a mediocre team and went undefeated in 1968 beating Georgia powerhouses Avondale, Athens and Dalton high schools in the playoffs loosing to state and nationally ranked Valdosta High at Georgia Techs Grant Field in the snow 32-12. He was greatly missed at Forest Park and still is after all these years. Congratulations and best wishes Coach Madison.

  9. Mike Emmons on November 23rd, 2010 12:14 pm

    Carl Madison made young boys into Men…………I played for the Chief the football season of 1983 and 1984….. And on November 22, 2010 Carl Madison walked into my place of Business to visit with me…… I wasnt there, but the girl working called my cell number and let me speak to him……It really made my day to have the Chief look me up…….. Now that tells you something about Carl…… He is one of a kind………..Mike Emmons

  10. Rob on January 29th, 2010 6:33 pm

    Coach madison coaches at my school tate now im a freshmen but i see him all the time hes AWSOME

  11. Madison Fan on August 24th, 2009 8:47 pm

    Carl is a special man. I have been fortunate to personally know him. He deserves all the accolades he can get!

  12. gary on July 31st, 2009 4:53 am

    u go coach i look 4ward 2 ya coaching me 4 3 more yrs when i get out of this brace 4 my broken jaw ill be bac at tate ready 2 work 2 death

  13. Paul Brown on May 21st, 2009 9:34 pm

    Congratulations coach! I am very confident that Carl Madison will put Tate back on the map. I enjoyed playing for the him and don’t be surprise if he leads this team to another State Championship! I will always remember winning the State Championship in 1980. Coach Madison builds championship teams and turn boys into men. Good Luck Coach. Go Aggies!!

  14. Joe Noplis on February 8th, 2009 8:48 pm

    Coach Madison made boys men, he taught many about character and what giving your all to a cause and never giving up.
    I have carried these throughout my successful life.

    Welcome Back Coach
    Bring Tate High Pride Back!!

    Joe Noplis
    Tate Class of 85!

  15. Henry on February 3rd, 2009 10:15 am

    Visited with Coach Madison in 2005 at a reunion and learned for the first time (since playing for him in 1968) what a great career he had. I am delighted to now learn that Coach is back where he belongs, leading and inspiring young men. Thanks for all you did at Forest Park Senior High in those memorable, formative years.

  16. casey on February 2nd, 2009 1:35 pm

    Congratulations Coach. I was a senior on his first team at Jackson Academy. Before Coach Madison arrived at JA, there was no pride within the school or community. He brought back that pride. Also he changed the lives and perspectives of so many young men on that team and also people in the community. I knew when he retired it wouldn’t be long before he would be back on the sidelines. There is not a better coach to stand beside on the sidelines than Coach Carl Madison!

  17. Molino Dad on January 23rd, 2009 8:09 pm

    I played three years for Tate under Madison, from “81″ to “83″. He is responsable for producing many sucessful young men. Some have a problem with his methods, but the world would be a better place if we had more coaches like Carl around.

  18. Robert on January 23rd, 2009 9:56 am

    Congratulations Coach. This man is indestructible.I had the pleasure playing for him at Ernest Ward. No educator in my life had a better foresight for picking out young men and teaching them that with a little willpower and determination there are no plateaus in life that will restrict you. Again my most sincere Congratulations.

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