The University of Alabama will host a “Celebration of Life” in memory of former Crimson Tide Director of Athletics Mal Moore in Coleman Coliseum on the UA campus on Thursday, April 4, at 3 p.m. Further details will be announced as they are finalized.
In lieu of flowers, gifts or letters, the Moore family requests that those wishing to express condolences consider a donation in memory of Mal Moore to the Crimson Tide Foundation (c/o Telisa Blanton, P.O. Box 870343, Tuscaloosa, AL 35487-0343) or the Mal and Charlotte Moore Caring Days Center (P.O. Box 3049, Tuscaloosa, AL 35403).
His Life and Legacy
Mal M. Moore, Director of Athletics at The University of Alabama, died on Saturday at Duke University Medical Center in Durham, N.C. Moore had been hospitalized for approximately three weeks due to a pulmonary condition.
A native of Dozier, Ala., he was married to the former Charlotte Davis of Tuscaloosa for 41 years before she passed in 2010 after a long illness. He is survived by one daughter, Mrs. Steve (Heather) Cook of Scottsdale, Ariz., a granddaughter, Anna Lee, and a grandson, Charles Cannon.
"The University of Alabama and the world of intercollegiate athletics have lost a legend, and I have lost a dear friend," said Bill Battle, Director of Athletics at The University of Alabama. "My heart goes out to his family and close friends in this time of sadness. After a time of grieving, we can begin to celebrate Mal's life, as his legacy will last for generations."
An enormously popular figure in the history of University of Alabama athletics, Moore's personal style as Director of Athletics from 1999-2013 generated devotion from the University community at-large, as well as the employees of the department that he oversaw.
After building an impeccable reputation as an assistant football coach at Alabama, Notre Dame and in the National Football League, Moore's enormous success as an athletics administrator was largely personal, as he skillfully and successfully dealt with issues and initiatives that required the cooperation of numerous campus and statewide entities. Moore's superb talent for gaining the respect and affection of those he worked with, as well as those that worked for him, revealed him to be the man perfectly suited to guide Alabama Athletics through a turbulent period into an era of unprecedented success and prosperity.
Moore possessed a gift for inspiring confidence by harmonizing diverse groups and disparate personalities into a smoothly functioning coalition. Moore's term as Director of Athletics was a personal triumph. The good-natured sincerity with which he conducted business created an uncomplicated atmosphere that disarmed potential critics and comforted his underlings. Bestowed with the power to lead, he did so through a spirit of conciliation and persuasion. He made complex issues simple and allowed his department to focus on the job at hand.
The University of Alabama's Director of Athletics from 1999 to 2013, Moore was a football player under legendary Crimson Tide head coach Paul W. "Bear" Bryant from 1958-62 and went on to serve as an assistant football coach on Bryant's staff. Moore held the distinction of being a part of ten national championship teams as a player, coach and athletics director (1961, 1964, 1965, 1973, 1978, 1979, 1992, 2009, 2011 and 2012), 16 SEC championships, and 39 bowl trips. He is the only individual connected with the Tide program - and likely the only person in collegiate athletics - to be a part of ten national football championships.
As Director of Athletics, Moore made an indelible mark on one of the nation's most storied athletic programs, leading a department through a period unprecedented growth and success both athletically and academically. Moore's vision was to make all Crimson Tide athletic teams and student-athletes nationally competitive at the highest level. His leadership elevated Alabama's athletic facilities to premier status nationally for all sports.
During Moore's tenure as Director of Athletics, Alabama produced national championship teams in football, gymnastics, softball and women's golf as well as Southeastern Conference championships in football, basketball, baseball, gymnastics, men's and women's golf, men's cross country and softball. Alabama athletes earned some of the highest honors the SEC and NCAA have to offer, including SEC Athlete of the Year, SEC Scholar-Athlete of the Year, NCAA Top VIII, NCAA Postgraduate Scholarships and NCAA Sportsperson of the Year
Moore directed more than $240 million of capital improvements to University of Alabama athletic facilities. Those projects encompassed the entire scope of all Crimson Tide athletic programs and benefitted every Alabama student-athlete, coach, and administrator. Throughout his administrative career, Moore worked with a diversified field of constituents, from fellow coaches and former players, to fans and the business community. All of those experiences and relationships - in addition to his ability to unify those many constituents - made him uniquely qualified to lead Alabama athletics in the 21st century.
Moore's dedication to and love of the University of Alabama was recognized on March 28, 2007, when, as a permanent tribute to his life-long contribution to The University of Alabama, the Board of Trustees of The University of Alabama officially dedicated the facility formerly known as The Football Building as the Mal M. Moore Athletic Facility.
In 2011, he was elected to the State of Alabama Sports Hall of Fame for his accomplishments as a coach and an administrator. After the completion of the 2011-12 academic and athletic seasons, Moore was named the winner of the John L. Toner Award, given to the nation's best athletic director. In 2012, the City of Tuscaloosa honored him and his late wife Charlotte by naming the new Caring Days program the Mal and Charlotte Moore Center, a facility that serves as a day program for adults with Alzheimer's and other memory disorders.
During a coaching career that spanned 31 years, Moore spent 22 of those at Alabama with stops at Montana State, Notre Dame and the NFL's St. Louis and Phoenix Cardinals. At Alabama, Moore began as Bryant's graduate assistant in 1964, then as defensive backfield coach for six seasons (1965-70) before becoming quarterbacks coach from 1971-82 and serving as the Tide's first offensive coordinator starting in 1975. He returned as offensive coordinator under Gene Stallings from 1990-93 before moving into athletic administration.
In addition to making his mark on Alabama Moore also had a national impact as a key member of several prestigious NCAA and college football committees. He served on the NCAA Division I Football Issues Committee, the SEC Athletic Directors Bowl Advisory Committee and the Big Six Conferences Minority Coaches Forum.
Born December 19, 1939, Moore was a 1963 graduate of The University of Alabama, earning both an undergraduate degree in Sociology and a 1964 Master's Degree in Secondary Education from the Capstone.
Mal was truly a special person in every sense of the word. We can talk about all the championships Mal has been involved with, but I think what will be remembered most was the man he was. He always put the best interests of others ahead of his own, he carried himself as a first-class gentleman, and he helped bring out the best in those around him.
Mal was an outstanding leader in terms of all he did for Alabama athletics. Most importantly, he was a great friend to me and my family. Mal was the number one reason we decided to make the move to Tuscaloosa.
Our thoughts and prayers are with his family, especially his daughter Heather. There's no question we have lost a great man today. What won't be lost is Mal's legacy in serving our University to make it a better place today and in the future. Nobody genuinely cared more about the Crimson Tide than Mal did. Mal has positively impacted athletics at Alabama unlike anyone ever has or probably ever will.
- Nick Saban, head football coach
Mal's passing is devastating to me and to everyone in the Crimson Tide family. No one loved the University of Alabama more than Mal Moore and that love and devotion is why he was the heart and soul of this athletics department and it's why he'll be missed in ways large and small for years to come. I knew Mal for more than 30 years and I can't imagine this athletics department without him. I will miss his amazing heart, his generous spirit and his unwavering integrity.
- Sarah Patterson, head gymnastics coach
We are extremely saddened to hear the news of Coach Moore's passing today. We are eternally grateful for all he has done for our family. Our thoughts and prayers go out to his daughter, Heather, his grandchildren and extended family. He was a great man.
- Anthony Grant, head men's basketball coach
First of all, our thoughts and prayers go out to Coach Moore's family and not enough can be said about what he stood for. We talk about character and the things he stood for with our team every day, and all of us live by his example daily. It's a sad day for the entire Alabama family. Unlike anywhere else in the country, when you put on the jersey that says 'Alabama' across the chest, the pride and tradition starts at the top. There are so many people that have helped build that standard, but none bigger than Coach Moore. With his history, what he stood for and how he represented this great University, he always did it in a first class manner.
- Mitch Gaspard, head baseball coach
I think our team realized what a champion he was for the whole athletic department, the state of Alabama, he was Alabama through and through. From Jackie Traina to Jordan Patterson to Courtney Conley, they all realized that. When he went up to the World Series last year and stood out in the rain with everybody else, it meant a lot to everyone in the program. Not just to that team but the kids on all 17 teams. We are really going to miss him.
- Patrick Murphy, head softball coach
Mal Moore will be truly missed. He loved golf and it is going to be tough not to have him out at the golf center, and not being able to get his input. His vision for our program and our facility is something that we will see every day going forward. The golf program is certainly going to miss him. Personally, Coach More gave me the opportunity to come to Alabama and have the success we have had with this program. I will forever be indebted to him for that. To trust a 50-year-old male with resurrecting the women's golf team was, I felt, a little bit of a leap of faith for him. I will never forget that, but the tools and resources that he gave our team to not only be successful as collegiate golfers, but for them to go forward and be successful as professionals, you just can't ask for more than that. The resources we have are unparalleled and it is all due to Mal Moore and his vision.
- Mic Potter, head women's golf coach
I'm broken hearted today. I owe a great deal to Coach Moore. I would not be here without him, and our program would not be what it is without him. For me personally, it is a tough day. Mal's vision is why I am at the University of Alabama. His love for the University, and his vision for how to help it succeed. Our current players as well as our former players truly realize what Coach Moore has done to make Alabama golf what it is.
- Jay Seawell, head men's golf coach
The University has lost a true champion. The standard of excellence that Coach Moore has established over the years will continue to position us favorably as we continue to pursue excellence in our given sports. Alabama has lost a great leader who will be sorely missed.
- Ed Allen, head volleyball coach
I'm saddened in the loss of a close friend in Mal Moore. The athletic department and University have lost someone that truly dedicated his life to the individuals that worked in both.
- Wendell Hudson, head women's basketball coach
I'm deeply saddened by this news as I'm at Alabama because of Coach Moore. Simply put, he was a great man and his contributions to this department, University and state will always be remembered. His last words to me were to always walk confidently. We all will walk, work and live with more confidence because of his pure and genuine commitment to all of the Alabama family.
- George Husack, head men's tennis coach
I am devastated at the news of Coach Moore's passing. I have the highest regard for him as a human being, and he was a very special person. What I admired most about Coach Moore was his character, integrity and gracious heart. You often hear of a coach being called a players' coach. Well he was a coaches' athletic director. He always recognized our contributions and took care of everyone. He was very good to me personally when my father was sick. His true colors were revealed with his patience, support and love. He believed in me and our team, and for that, I am forever grateful.
- Jenny Mainz, head women's tennis coach
Mal was a true Southern gentleman in every way. He did things the right way. He was always considerate of others and their feelings in any decision that he made. He was not only my boss, he was a great friend. I spent many happy times with him. I can say unequivocally that he loved The University of Alabama more than any person I have ever met. Not just the athletic teams but the University as a whole.
- Ronny Robertson, Sr. Associate Athletics Director for Development
I don't think the magnitude of what our athletic department lost today can truly be appreciated. What Coach Moore did here is hard to calculate or understand, but that will become apparent over the coming years. He left a legacy that is likely unmatched. And to do it in the way that he did - with humility, patience and grace - is something that is rare. Athletics can be a tough business, but I don't know a single person that is an adversary for Coach Moore. That may say more about him as a person than anything I can say. To say we will miss him doesn't say nearly enough.
- Dan Waters, head track & field coach
Coach Moore was a big reason that I came to Alabama. I've spent my entire career working with college coaches around the country and hearing them sing the blues that their athletics directors were one-track football people, but Coach Moore wasn't that way. He genuinely cared about the school and everyone associated with it. He cared about all the sports and you just felt like he was someone you wanted to work for. He's the reason that we have the environment we do at the University and the athletics department, where everyone supports one another and cares what happens in all the sports across the board. He's the one that has been the driving force behind all that. We've lost a great man.
- Coach Dennis Pursley, head swimming & diving coach
I am greatly saddened to hear that Coach Moore has passed away. He was instrumental in developing the rowing program and elevating it into a varsity sport. I am truly saddened that he will not be here to see one of his facilities, the women's rowing boathouse, be completed. It is going to be a big step for our program. I give my condolences to his entire family. He is truly going to be missed. One of the things I talk to the team about is that to be successful as a team you need leadership and you need to be loyal to the principles that you establish and you have to be that kind of dedicated individual and be consistent in that commitment. Mal was a classic example of someone who was a great leader and a team player as well as someone who was dedicated and had a passion for what he does. He has really helped the University and the athletic department achieve greatness and that is a great example for our girls.
- Larry Davis, head rowing coach
It is with heavy hearts that we consider what Coach Moore has meant not only to this athletics department, but to the University of Alabama. His contribution through the years is impossible to quantify. While the news of his passing is met with incredible sadness, we are fortunate to have known him and are grateful for the foundation he has built to ensure the athletics department can sustain the current run of success that we are currently experiencing.