King wins Sporty Award

Updated: April 5, 2018

By Troy Mitchell


Foreman High School Head Coach Mark King has been named the recipient of the 2018 Sporty Carpenter Award.

The Sporty Award will be presented at the 17th annual Sporty Bowl, Henderson State’s Spring Football Game, which will take place Saturday, April 14 at Carpenter-Haygood Stadium/Ruggles Field with the game set for 11 a.m. The presentation of the annual Sporty Award will be presented at halftime.

The award is named for long time legendary coach Sporty Carpenter who was the Reddie head coach from 1971 to 1989, compiling 119 victories and leading Henderson to five Arkansas Intercollegiate Conference titles.

The award is presented to a former Reddie football player or Henderson Alum who has pursued a career in coaching football and has exemplified excellence on and off the field.

In his second season as head coach at Foreman, King led the Gators to the 2017 Class AA Arkansas Activities Association State Championship.

For his accomplishment, King was named Farm Bureau Coach of the Year, Little Rock Touchdown Club Coach of the Year, 42 Sports Coach of the Year and was selected to coach in the Arkansas High School Coaches Association All-Star Game.

King was an offensive lineman for the Reddies from 1986 to 1990, earning All-AIC honors in 1989 and was a preseason All-American selection in 1990.

Following his playing days, King served as a student assistant coach at Henderson in 1991 and 1992. He earned his BSE in Education in 1995.

King began his coaching career in 1996 as head junior high football and track coach at Ashdown. In 1998, he moved up to the high school where he served as offensive and defensive line coach.

In 1999, King was named defensive coordinator at Ashdown serving in that capacity for the next eight years. During that time, the Panthers won four conference championships and advanced to the state playoffs every season.

With the success at Ashdown, King earned the head coaching position at Parkers Chapel in 2009 where he led the Trojans to their first-ever winning season (8-3) as well as the school’s first playoff appearance.

King moved on to become head coach at Horatio High School in 2012 and guided the Lions to their first seven-win season in 10 years.

In 2016, King took over a struggling Foreman program that finished 1-9 in 2015. The Gators went 8-4 in King’s first year, advancing to the second round of the state playoffs.

In his nine years as a head coach, King has a 55-44 record including a 13-1 mark in 2017.