Ex-Tide linebacker coaches Central
By CHRIS WHITE
Woodrow Lowe never gave much thought to being a great player while a linebacker at Alabama. Instead, he and his teammates focused on simply doing everything in their power to make sure the Crimson Tide came away with a win each week.
“At Alabama, it was always about the team,” said Lowe, now the Central-Phenix City football coach. “Nobody ever thought about making a hall of fame. That was something nobody ever even talked about.”
But Lowe left for South Bend, Ind., on Wednesday, where he will receive one of the most prestigious individual honors of all: enshrinement in the College Football Hall of Fame. The festivities surrounding the event begin today and culminate with the enshrinement dinner Saturday evening.
Considering the college football greats already members of the Hall of Fame, the former Central player said he is honored to be recognized among them.
“It’s really such a humbling thing for me,” Lowe said. “To think of some of the players that have been inducted there and know I’m going in with them, sometimes I just have to pinch myself and realize it’s real. I never thought I’d be in such company.”
Lowe played from 1972-75 at Alabama, where he was a three-time first-team All-American and captained the 1973 national championship team. His 134 tackles as a sophomore still stand as an Alabama single-season record. He was drafted by the San Diego Chargers, where he stayed for 11 seasons, missed only two games and made 21 interceptions.
After retiring, Lowe did stints as an assistant coach with the Kansas City Chiefs, the Oakland Raiders, Alabama-Birmingham and Jackson-Olin High. He also spent three seasons as head coach at Smiths Station.
While with the Chiefs, he turned down an offer to become the head coach at Central. When the position came open again last winter with the retirement of Ron Nelson from coaching, Lowe was awarded the job. He said he hopes to finish his career at Central.
While preparing for the trip to the enshrinement ceremony, Lowe said he began thinking about how grateful he is for every stop in his playing and coaching career.
“There are just so many people who have been a part of my life everywhere I have gone, and they have all contributed to me getting this honor,” Lowe said. “From the University of Alabama, to my family, to my hometown of Phenix City, and all the way to San Diego, I have met some great people who have helped me and have all contributed to making me who I am.”
Lowe was inducted into the Alabama Sports Hall of Fame in 2001.