Every summer, Ohatchee High School’s head football coach Scott Martin can be found somewhere in Calhoun County playing golf. During the second weekend of each July, Martin competes in the Sunny King Charity Classic golf tournament.
With the exception of last year, Martin has participated in the charity event with partner Brett Rothwell every year since 2013.
“I always tell people about the Sunny King, and I say it’s a party disguised as a golf tournament,” Martin laughed.
For Martin, the Sunny King certainly is more than “just a golf tournament.” It introduced him to his biggest love — his wife, Shirley Millwood, an attorney in Alexandria.
“We met the Sunday night of my first Sunny King,” Martin said.
In fact, July 14, the last day of this year’s tournament, is six years since they met and five years since they married.
“I always say what’s meant to be is meant to be and fate has a way of working itself out and that’s what’s happened,” Martin said.
Martin relocated to Ohatchee to be with Shirley after a solid two-year run as the head football coach at 6A powerhouse Hillcrest High School in Tuscaloosa. He said that moving to Ohatchee was an easy decision.
“I fell in love with the community,” Martin said. “I ended up buying a house on the lake, and it was kind of like this could be the end all be all.”
After moving to the area where his wife grew up, Martin is not looking to move elsewhere. He plans to retire from coaching after his time at Ohatchee is up.
He wants to stay in the area to drive his boat on Lake Neely Henry and play golf at one of Anniston’s many courses.
“The Sunny King is what wrapped it all around and what started it all,” Martin said. “This tournament has a really, really special place in our relationship. It’s what brought us together.”
Martin will be playing with Rothwell in the Championship A or B flight this weekend. The tournament starts for them at Anniston Country Club on Friday, moves to Cider Ridge on Saturday and wraps up at Silver Lakes on Sunday.
“It’s a great format,” Martin said. “You’re playing on three different golf courses and none of the three are like each other so it’s a pretty good skill test.”
According to the Sunny King Classic website, the tournament will host about 400 golfers this weekend. Martin said he thinks this year’s competition is one of the strongest in recent years. Though Martin claims he and Rothwell are “the old guys,” he believes they will perform well against the other golfers in their flight.
“I always tell people we are good enough to be at the bottom of the top,” Martin laughed. “We are the best old guys out there.”
While he is looking forward to the “unparalleled” social events Friday and Saturday and the friends he will reconnect with on the green, Martin said nothing will beat this weekend sharing the anniversary of his marriage.
“I hope we continue to play as long as they have the Sunny King,” Martin said. “It’s a little bit more special to me. Some people look at it as just a golf tournament, but I look at it as where this chapter of my life started.”