Published 10:25 pm Monday, November 25, 2013

Mike Dean’s history with UMS-Wright’s Terry Curtis dates back quite a while

Friday night at Veterans Memorial Stadium, Mike Dean will look across the field and see a very familiar face.

The Charles Henderson Trojans and UMS-Wright Bulldogs will write another chapter of the ongoing friendly rivalry between Dean and UMS head coach Terry Curtis.

Sign up for our daily email newsletter

Get the latest news sent to your inbox

Curtis took over the head coaching position at UMS-Wright in 1999, but coached against Dean’s father, Joe, while at the now-defunct Shaw High School and Murphy High School in Mobile.

“We have seen each other quite a bit,” Dean said. “He goes back a way, and he has even seen my father across the field. He has been around a long time, and I respect him. He is old school, and it speaks volumes to see what has done every place he has been.”

Curtis has captured five state championships at UMS-Wright, and is the fifth-winningest active coach in the state. Curtis’ teams have won 243 games, and lost just 76. Dean is 54-19 in his career.

Dean and Curtis both hail from the Mobile Bay area, one of the most talent-rich areas in the country. Dean has nothing but good things to say about Curtis.

“They don’t always have the best athletes, but those kids believe in him and what he preaches,” said Dean. “He knows how to win, and will not allow his players to quit. We are similar in ways. He is a friend. He has been a winner everywhere he has been.”

Dean is 1-1 as a head coach against Curtis, with both games coming while Dean was at McGill-Toolen Catholic High School and Curtis at UMS-Wright.

Curtis won the first meeting between the two, 31-10 in 2009. Dean captured the most recent meeting 41-16 in 2010.

“We know each other well,” Dean said. “We know what each other likes to do in certain situations. We have seen each other a lot, and it kind of adds to the game a little bit. We know each others tendencies, but it’s all about the kids on Friday night.”

Charles Henderson and UMS-Wright will meet for the first time ever in the Alabama High School Athletic Association semifinals Friday night at Veterans Memorial Stadium in Troy.

Kickoff is set for 7 p.m.