Pike County High suspends football operations

Published 5:49 pm Sunday, October 1, 2023

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Stemming from the fallout from the on-field that occurred during Friday’s Pike County High vs. Headland High football game, Pike County High School has suspended all football operations.  

Pike County Head Football Coach Mark Hurt confirmed to The Messenger on Sunday that the decision was “standard operating procedure” as the Alabama High School Athletic Association (AHSAA) investigates the incident.  

On Friday, a Pike County player was injured during a second quarter play. Subsequently the player collapsed on the sideline and was taken to the emergency room. 

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“He’s fine, everyone is fine,” Hurt said of the injured player.  

Following the injury, tensions mounted between both teams and flags were thrown. Headland’s team then went to the locker room for several minutes before officials attempted to continue with the game. On the next play, a brawl between the two teams erupted with a number of players leaving the sideline to join in the fight.  

Both teams were then sent to the locker room and the final minutes of the first half were run off. The game was then called and Headland awarded the 20-0 win via forfeit.  

“It was just an unfortunate incident, it’s one that at Pike County we definitely do not condone,” Hurt emphasized. “We do not condone the whole incident at all, fighting or anything. We are here to play football and learn sportsmanship. It was an unfortunate incident where emotions got out of control and we definitely plan on correcting that problem.” 

Hurt said that the AHSAA did not give him a timetable on when they hope to conclude the investigation, but he said that he hopes it will be finished this coming week. According to WDHN, Headland High School has also suspended football operations as the investigation is conducted. 

The Bulldogs are scheduled to play New Brockton this coming Friday. All Homecoming activities at PCHS have also been put on pause for the time being.