Son of former PHS head coach joins Panthers’ football staff

Bobby Rhoades, son of former Pelham High School head football coach Rick Rhoades, has joined the Panthers’ football staff as the assistant head coach in charge of offense.

Rhoades’ hire was approved June 3 during the Shelby County Board of Education meeting.

In addition to his football duties, Rhoades will teach social studies.

“Pelham has always been a special place to my family, and there’s not another place I would rather coach,” Rhoades said. “I’ve always considered Pelham to be home, and there are so many great people in such a great community. We’re very excited to get to go home.”

Rhoades comes to Pelham after serving one year as the head coach of the Class 6A Grissom Tigers. Rhoades led the Tigers to a 4-6 record.

Prior to his stint at Grissom, Rhoades served as a collegiate assistant for 10 years.

Rhoades coached tight ends and fullbacks at Illinois State in 2008, wide receivers at Central Arkansas from 2005-07, wide receivers at Tusculum College from 2000-04 and as an assistant at Delta State in 1999.

Rhoades also served as an assistant at Pelham under his father from 1997-98.

Rhoades replaces former offensive coordinator Jep Irwin, who left to take the head coaching job at Lassiter High School (Ga.).

Pelham head coach Brett Burnett said he looks forward to Rhoades working with new offensive coordinator Brent Thompson in an effort to make the Panthers a more physical running team.

“He’s going to bring a more physical approach where we line up under center more and our offensive line has their hands in the dirt,” Burnett said.

Burnett said he expects the two coaches to work side-by-side.

“I feel like it will work extremely well and it will be a good fit for us,” Burnett said. “But Bobby will have the ultimate say in what we do offensively.”