Former Marshall High School football coach Dennis Parker was inducted into the East Texas Coaches Association Hall of Honor.

LONGVIEW — Longtime football coach Dennis Parker was one of seven honorees for the East Texas Coaches Association Hall of Honor on April 20 inside the Holiday Inn North Infinity Event Center.

“It’s East Texas, so it’s the biggest honor there is,” Parker said. “There is no other place in Texas that plays football like we do, so it’s a great honor, and it’s a great honor for the city of Marshall.”

Parker was honored alongside coaches Mike Vallery of Kilgore and Clarence McMichael of Nacogdoches, player Matt Flynn (Tyler Lee), sports writer Phil Hicks (Tyler Morning Telegraph), football official Bobby Bain (Tyler Chapter) and the 2022 state champion Carthage Bulldogs football team.

Parker, a 1968 graduate of Idabel High School in Oklahoma, began his coaching career in the 1970s at San Antonio Edison. In 1975, Parker became the youngest head coach in Class 5A history at 24 years old at San Antonio Holmes.

Parker then went to the college ranks to become an assistant coach at Southeast Missouri State University from 1977-81. Parker took over as the offensive coordinator at Converse Judson High School in 1982-93.

Parker was named the head coach at Marshall High School in 1984 and coached there for seven seasons, posting a record of 56-27-1. In 1988, Parker led the Mavericks to the first undefeated football regular season in school history, and he was named the Texas High School Coach of the Year, becoming the lone coach to win that award without winning the state championship.

In 1990, his final year at Marshall, Parker led the mavericks to a state championship, which was capped off by a 21-19 win over Converse Judson. Parker was once again named the Texas High School Coach of the Year.

“I’m sure I got this award because the Mavericks won a state championship in 1990,” Parker said. “We beat Longview three years in a row … after getting beat by them 22 years in a row. When I thought about speaking, I don’t deserve this award, Marshall deserves this award.

“In 1987, we won eight games. We had one page in the annual, one. The last time Marshall won eight games, Y.A. Tittle was the quarterback. Some of y’all don’t even know who Y.A. Tittle is.”

Parker mentioned some of his assistants as Marshall, including Bill Harper, Danny Long and Ardis McCann.

After his time at Marshall, Parker was the head coach at North Texas University from 1991-93. He was a head coach at Cleburne High School from 1994-98 and Mesa High School in Arizona from 2004-06. He was the head coach at Texas Lutheran University from 2007-0. He coached at his alma mater of Idabel from 2014-17. He was 90-59-1 as a head football coach in high school in the state of Texas, and he had a record of 17-45-1 as a collegiate head coach.

Parker’s son, Sam Parker, is a former offensive coordinator at John Tyler High School, and he is the current head football coach at Tomball Memorial High School.

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