Alma Bryant’s Breland retiring to fight cancer
MOBILE, AL (WNSP) — Davidson beat Alma Bryant 35-0 Friday, in the last game of coach Bruce Breland’s career.
The 60-year-old announced that he would retire after the season and focus on fighting cancer. Breland was diagnosed with stage 4 prostate cancer in April.
“Right now, the doctors say my numbers look good,” Breland told AL.com on Friday night. “They are pleased and happy about where I am, so I’m happy with that as well.”
On June 9, Breland had surgery to remove his prostate and 15 lymph nodes, but the doctors were unable to remove all of the cancer.
“They cut as far as they could, and there was still cancer,” he said in July. “They are going to go in next and blast it as much as they can. The tests have shown is not in the bones or major organs right now so the hope is they can get it all with radiation.”
Since then, he has undergone a treatment to keep the cancer from spreading. According to AL.com, he will begin five days of radiation a week for the next two to three months, beginning on Nov. 14.
“He and his wife Donna, who is also retiring from teaching, will move back to Birmingham for the treatments,” wrote AL.com’s Ben Thomas.
Following the beginning of his treatment, Breland said he plans to take sick days until his last day at Alma Bryant.
“If you are a praying person, I would ask you to pray for Bruce Breland,” Davidson head coach Fred Riley said in July. “Not only does our profession need him, but our world needs him. We want our kids to make their part of the world a better place just because they are there. Bruce Breland makes every place he goes better.
“I don’t know too many people like him.”
Breland is 88-109 overall as a coach, with tenures at Coosa Valley, Bessemer Academy, Fultondale, Shelby County, Woodlawn and Alma Bryant. The Hurricanes were 1-9 this year, and after his first season four years ago he led the team into 7A.
“The one thing I am really going to remember is the players at Bryant and the way they worked,” he said. “It didn’t matter the record. They came every day and worked their tails off. I’ll always appreciate that.”
In the end, Breland said he wouldn’t trade
“I feel good. I feel very positive,” Breland said. “I feel wonderful. I have great energy. I really feel like the Lord has already got His hands on me.
“I feel good about the future.”