BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (WBRC) - The Birmingham Athletic Partnership created a Coach of the Year award in memory of former Wenonah Basketball Coach Emanuel Bell in 2019, but this year, they’re adding another legacy to his name.
The Birmingham Athletic Partnership has created the Coach Emanuel “Tubb” Bell Scholarship that will be awarded to a senior basketball player within Birmingham City Schools.
“We’ve tried to honor coaches to follow him and now we’re trying to give something back to the student-athlete that have played the game through his name also,” said Toney Pugh, Executive Director of the Birmingham Athletic Partnership.
Coach Bell won more than 500 games at Wenonah including four straight girls state championships from 2014-2017, but this scholarship goes beyond his record. “It’s about his character off the court. He made a lasting impression through this state in the way he treated others and loved everyone,” added Pugh.
“I’m just excited for the players. I think they are going to vote on character, courage, and compassion, again all of those qualities were totally exemplified in Coach Bell,” said District 7 Councilor Wardine Alexander.
“If you actually went into the school and watched those kids react to Coach Bell; I would go in there and walk down the hallway with him, and just to see the students react to him, it was remarkable,” said Pugh.
The first-ever Coach Bell Scholarship will be awarded in May. The Birmingham Athletic Partnership is still determining the amount of the scholarship.