Rogers ends football career as winningest Florida coach

Legendary high school football coach Charles “Corky” Rogers of The Bolles School officially ended his coaching career with more wins, state titles, championship game appearances, Hall of Fame inductions and collegiate players than any coach in Florida.

Rogers, 73, who has led the football program at Bolles since 1989, announced his retirement due to medical reasons March 7 during a press conference in Bolles’ McGehee Auditorium.

“I’m sitting in a chair. I’m not coaching. I’m not teaching. This isn’t fair to the kids,” he said. “I don’t want to short them in any way. They need somebody who is active and able to do things.”

Finishing his career with a 466-84-1 record, Rogers is the fifth winningest coach nationally. In 2011, he was the eighth coach in the history of high school football to reach 400 victories. During his 45-year career, he also holds the Florida state record for most state titles won among coaches with 10 and has racked up 83 playoff victories – 78 at Bolles alone, which is more than any coach in state history. In 2016, he led Bolles to its 17th appearance in the state championship, a state record.

A graduate of Robert E. Lee High School in Riverside, Rogers played football at Georgia Tech and attended National Football League training camps with the Baltimore Colts and Washington Redskins as a tight-end receiver. His first coaching job was at Ribault Junior High, where he served as offensive coordinator before being appointed Head Coach at Lee High School in 1972. During his 17 years at Lee, he accumulated 10 consecutive district titles, a state record then, and a winning record of 141-39-1.

An impressive number of Rogers-coached athletes have gone on to play football at the collegiate level, including 156 at Bolles. He has also had 11 former players compete in the NFL.

Rogers is a member of the National High School Hall of Fame (2015), the Florida Sports Hall of Fame (2013), Robert E. Lee High School Alumni Hall of Fame (2013), Gator Bowl Hall of Fame (2012), Florida High School Athletic Hall of Fame (2005), and the Florida Athletic Coaches Association Hall of Fame (2002). He has also earned numerous Coach-of-the-Year honors at the state level and was named National High School Football Coach of the Year for 2004-05 by the National High School Coaches Association.

“I am most proud of being a head coach for more than 44 years, and I never had a losing season,” Rogers said. “If you have a good, solid program, you are going to have a successful team.”

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