East Alabama — High school football is just around the corner with the first “The PrepZone,” show less than three weeks away. News 3 sports reporter Justin Holbrock breaks down the upcoming season for our area 7A AHSAA teams: Central, Auburn and Smiths Station.
“Week in and week out it’s an SEC West over here whoever and whatever you do,” Central Head Coach Jamey Dubose said.
DuBose knows 7A football isn’t far off from talent at the college level especially at Central.
This year, the Red Devils have 15 players with Division 1A or 1AA offers.
“One of the things that got me back here was when you look at what we may not be as big an area as Birmingham and Mobile but the east Alabama high schools have the best talent and the best coaching,” DuBose said.
Two of those talented players include the only two returning offensive starters in senior QB Peter Parrish who’s committed to LSU and running back A’montae Spivey who will commit on Aug. 6.
“As a young athlete, having all the attention that you have and the power you have to influence guys is a big responsibility,” Spivey said. “Just being in that spotlight at such a young age makes you want to do right.”
Central opens on Au. 25 against Benjamin E Mays in Atlanta for the first-ever C1N Battle of the Border Wars sponsored by the Cam Newton Foundation.
To end the season the Red Devils will play their rival Auburn at home.
The Tigers will have five to six players to replace on both offense and defense including quarterback Griffin Speaks who was the back-up last year.
“If you had to put the back-up in people will say, ‘We’ll be fine.’ Our mindset wasn’t we’ll be fine it was we’ll be great. We’ll be fantastic,” Head Coach Adam Winegarden said.
Rounding out our 7A teams is Smiths Station, which had zero wins last year and is on their third head coach in four years.
“The biggest challenge is simply to get the kids to believe in themselves and each other and believe in us,” head coach Mike Glisson said.