A Pell City native has been inducted into the Florida Association of Basketball Coaches Court of Legends Hall of Fame.
Rickey McCullough, a 1970 graduate of Pell City High School, was one of 14 honorees recognized during induction ceremonies May 15 in Orlando. He is currently the head basketball coach for Bainbridge, Ga., High School.
“Being named to the Hall of Fame is a good feeling,” he said. “It’s kind of a culmination of a career doing something I love. I think I was the youngest person inducted this year, and a lot of the guys I went in with are coaches I’ve looked up to for a long time.”
McCullough, whose overall coaching record is 723-285, was named Region 1-AAAA Coach of the Year for the past two seasons, leading the Bainbridge Bearcats to the region championship and the State Class AAAA Final Four each season. His four-year record at Bainbridge is 86-34.
He previously coached 31 years in Florida, one year at Cottondale High School, three at Liberty County High School, and 27 at Chipley High School, where he compiled a 599-229 record. His Chipley teams won 19 district and 15 regional championships and made it to the Final Four five times.
McCullough has been named coach of the year five times by the Florida Athletic Coaches Association and 10 times by the Panhandle Athletic Conference. He was the North Florida All-Star head coach in 2003 and an assistant All-Star coach in 2008.
“I want to say that the support of my wife Pam helped make it possible,” he said. “We have been married 29 years, and I couldn’t have made it to this point without her always being there to take care of things. I can truthfully say that I have enjoyed going to work every day of my career.”
While a student at Pell City, the coach played on a Panthers team that went 28-2 and finished as state runner-up his senior season. He went on to play for two state championship teams at Jefferson State Junior College before signing a basketball scholarship with Livingston University (now the University of West Alabama), where he was voted team captain and best defender during his junior and senior seasons.
McCullough said that his sister, Brenda Cosper, still resides in Pell City, “and I’m coming back up for my class reunion next weekend, but I don’t get back as often as I used to.”