Williams: Leading by example
Alabama is littered with smalls towns spread throughout the state.
Every small town has featured individuals who have been able to leave and be successful.
The city of Putnam, Ala. is no exception.
W.S. Neal High School’s football program has been fortunate enough to gain Putnam native, head coach Andro Williams.
Williams grew up in the small community in Marengo County.
At an early age his love for football grew.
“For me it was more of a family historical thing. My father coached wrestling, football, and basketball. My entire male family was in some way involved in athletics. I was always surrounded by sports and it was really the only thing to do,” Williams said.
Williams attended Sweetwater High School and played quarterback.
“I could really play any position. I played mainly quarterback and safety,” Williams said.
Williams had many athletic opportunities offered to him upon graduating from high school.
William chose to attend a junior college in Mississippi for one year and then transferred back to West Alabama to play football.
“I played at West Alabama for three seasons. I started at defensive back and then transitioned to offense as a running back. I remember in one of my last games a player from North Alabama, a guy with the last name, Bell gave me a slight concussion. Bell later went on to play in the NFL with the Panthers,” said Williams.
Williams family history is what ultimately led him into coaching.
Many members of his family had been coaches, including his father, and that started him on the road to coaching early in his life.
“I really always knew that I wanted to teach and coach. It was almost as if it was already set in stone and destined for me to travel down this road,” Williams said.
Williams began his coaching journey at Thomasville High.
From Thomasville, he went to Clarke County High School for one year and then took a position at Sweetwater High where he remained for six years.
He later transferred positions to Linden, where he remained for ten years before finding his home at W.S. Neal High last season.
During that time William’s has grasped two state titles and has made two other appearances.
William’s has his own style of coaching and reaching into the lives of his young men.
There are so many different avenues to be able to reach kids and help develop their potential.
Coach Williams is no exception to this rule.
“I am here to develop these young men and help bring them to realistic life goals they will encounter. Football is one of the closest sports that can bring them to life. I am here to discuss life with these guys every day. My plans to help these young men to bring them to life goals and to help them. Life relates to football and football relates to life,” Williams said.
“Life is still life. I would like to see every young man develop and challenge them. Football is a way of bringing everything out in a team perspective and it challenges them to bring out their best. I want the light that I have to shine through into them,” Williams said.
William’s has a hand in every single day in the lives of the young men that he leads.
Life is not always easy, William’s recognizes this and is striving to prepare each of his players for any obstacle that they might meet.
“I want to push them to be the best they can be. We will continue to work to help each of them reach their goal,” William’s said.
On talking to many players of the Eagles football team, they all have expressed their love for William’s and look to him as not only a coach, but a father figure.
“I spend as much time with these guys as I do my own son. We push these guys to give their best but we give respect to them as well,” William’s said.
William’s has been thrown into the middle of one of the most heated rivalries in Alabama high school football history.
WSN and TRM battle every year for bragging rights.
“I am no stranger to rivalries. It about how you handle the rivalry. As a coach and team, you take one game at a time and you expect to win every game. Of course, we want to win against Miller and when it comes time to play them, that’s our goal,” William’s said.
At the end of every game, even the Miller and WSN game, William’s hold a prayer with both teams at the 50-yard-line at the end of every game.
“I started this a number of years ago. I want to teach the guys how to win the right way. I want them to know the correct meaning of sportsmanship. When a game is over, it’s over. Many of these kids know each other and you never know what can happen after the game. I tell my guys to be thankful and blessed they have the opportunity to play football together,” William’s said.
“Brewton and East Brewton is a great place to live and has been great for my family. I am very thankful to be here and I love this community and school system and want to help move it forward,” William’s said.
William’s is a great addition to our community and his leadership is something great to see.
He is one coach that truly leads by example and cares for his kid’s.
“At the end of every year Brewton and East Brewton has their time as we play each other but in the end, after the game is done, we are all one community,” Williams said.