Reidsville head football coach Jimmy Teague was recently named the NFL’s Don Shula High School Coach of the Year recipient presented by GMC and the Carolina Panthers in a surprise ceremony surrounded by family, friends and fans Thursday morning in the school’s gymnasium.
Teague was one of 32 national nominees for the award.
Flanked by the Rams’ cheerleading team that provided a runway entry to the gym, Teague was welcomed by a vocal chorus of cheers.
During the ceremony, the Panthers presented Teague with a commemorative trophy and a $2,500 check to benefit the Reidsville athletics program.
“Coach Teague’s continued excellence and contributions to high school football in our region have made a special impact,” said Carolina Panthers Director of Community Relations Riley Fields.
The Carolina Panthers and GMC said in a statement they were honored to name Teague the team’s High School Coach of the Year.
“Coach Teague’s 37 years of coaching service to our region has impacted thousands of lives and united communities,” said Reidsville High School Athletics Director Joe Walker, who also played for Teague. “He has created a lasting legacy that is still being written.”
Teague has led the Reidsville Rams program for 26 seasons during two stints beginning in 1992. During that time, his teams have won eight state championships. His 2022 team advanced to the state championship game again this season, but finished runner-up to East Duplin and finished with a 14-2 record.
Teague has compiled a 338-58 record while at Reidsville and a 379-111 overall record. He was also selected as the head coach of the 2019 North Carolina Shrine Bowl team.
“The tradition goes back a long way in Reidsville, and soccer is a very important part of what our community does. “It’s just a blessing to be a part of this community that is home to me,” Teague said.
Teague’s son Erik, who is Reidsville’s offensive coordinator, was in attendance and addressed the crowd.
“Anyone who knows my dad knows that this is probably the last thing he wants to do right now, but all the success and wins that we’ve had, that he’s had … he wants his team and his players to be recognized for their success ,” he said.
“What people don’t see is the long hours – changing laundry, washing uniforms, cleaning the locker room, waking up early in the morning, watching film late at night – people don’t see all the behind-the-scenes things that coaches do that lead to all the success. No one is more deserving than my father today, so congratulations, said the son.
With three television crews surrounding him, Fields presented the trophy to Teague flanked by former Panthers legendary defensive lineman Mike Rucker.
“Coach, again, the reason we’re here is to celebrate you and the amazing impact you’ve made on high school football in our region, and also the incredible impact you’ve made on the Reidsville community for generations, and I believe that the success your team has had this season is just a testament to your continued greatness and the outstanding way you serve this high school coach,” Fields said.
Choked with emotion, the humble coach pulled it together as he thanked the crowd.
“Again, what a surprise. I had no idea this was going to happen, but like you just said, these are the guys here who deserve the credit. I don’t get the credit. These guys get the credit. The Lord has blessed me. To have my son, to have my family, to have the Reidsville football family is such a blessing. To be able to be a part of this for so many years — and again, thank you so much for this — I appreciate it,” Jimmy Teague said.
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