Central Alabama Scoreboard Staff | Story & Photos
CENTRAL ALABAMA SCOREBOARD OFFICE – The High School football season comes down to 12 weeks (give or take) between August and December. It’s never a direct path though; think of it as a labyrinth that high school coaches and student-athletes have to navigate leading to region wins, playoff berths and ultimately the prized blue map hoisted high. This list is something we at CAScoreboard have talked about building since our inception and we have finally taken steps to make it happen. Using a mixture of factors – onfield accomplishment, stats, postseason media awards, All-State selections – a list was crafted recognizing the best and the brightest from within our Coverage Community. With all that said, we present to you Central Alabama Scoreboard’s inaugural Football Super 22.
And away we go …
Team of the Year: Elmore County High School
This is the fan participation portion of the Football Super 22 and PantherNation turned out in force solidifying Elmore County as the walkaway winner. But they should be proud of what their bunch accomplished this season. After finishing 2021 an abysmal 0-10 a change was made and Kyle Caldwell was brought in as head coach. That lit a fire under the football team and in a new system designed to showcase their skills, the Panthers raced out to a 3-0 start on the way to winning four of their first five games. Elmore County – led by Peyton Stephenson, CJ Wilkes and Jabari Murphy on offense and a host of Panthers on defense – finished the year 7-4 and earned a trip to the playoffs. The 7-4 finish in which Elmore County outscored their opponents 388-277 was their best in years and ended a years-long playoff drought. Prior to this season, the last time an Elmore County team advanced to the postseason was in 2011 when they lost to UMS-Wright in the second round. This season – more than anything – shows how a change really can do some good.
Coach of the Year: Jimmy Perry | Saint James School
Who should it be?
That’s the question we asked ourselves and the candidates didn’t make it any less complicated. Elmore County (first-year coach Kyle Caldwell), Wetumpka (first-year coach Bear Woods) both brought their teams to prominence and the postseason. Kirk Johnson (Montgomery Catholic) had his army of Knights marching in sync. Jason Franklin (Holtville) had his Bulldogs hungry for another shot at the playoffs. Granger Shook (Trinity) had the Wildcats on a tear. Ultimately though the decision was made to look at the body of work. To steal a line from the College Football Playoff selections who – from start to finish – had the most successful season. That led us to Jimmy Perry and the Saint James School Trojans who finished 2022 as 3A State Champions. It also didn’t hurt that the Alabama Sports Writers voted him as 3A All-State Coach of the Year. Perry took over the Trojans program in 2012 and in that time crafted a team that consistently advanced to the playoffs. This year’s team though was the best of the bunch ultimately defeating Piedmont and high school record-setting quarterback Jack Hayes 45-28 in the championship game.
“This championship was part of a three-year plan,” Perry told the media following the championship victory. “These guys started for us as freshmen and sophomores. We took our lumps, went 7-4 that first season and 10-2 last year. This group stayed together … this is the culmination of all of that.”
Perry (157-69 in 19 seasons) has a coaching lineage that covers more than four decades.
No. 1 | Player of the Year: Jeremiah Cobb | Montgomery Catholic | Running Back
Jeremiah Cobb’s stats jump off the page. But to know just how much of an X Factor he is, you need to see him play. I’d (Griffin) never covered a Montgomery Catholic game until last season but was no stranger to Cobb’s ability to take over a game. The stats had been impressive. But to watch him take a handoff from quarterback Caleb McCreary from inside their own 25, make one cut and then sprint full speed down the sideline was just impressive. In that one run, he displayed his ability to be a gamechanger, literally running away from the fastest DB on the other team – I honestly don’t remember who the opponent was. But that run …
“Cobb is an exceptional young man on and off the field,” said Kirk Johnson, coach of the Montgomery Catholic Knights. “The things he has accomplished over his career is simply amazing. To be able to rush for 2,000 yards three straight years while having a quarterback throw for 2,500 plus each year is impressive. His 10.2 yards a carry is No. 1 all-time for the AHSAA.”
In terms of statistics Cobb (from 2019-2022) ran for 6,567 yards on 639 carries, scoring 75 touchdowns and averaging just over 10 yards per carry. He caught 46 passes for nearly 1,192 yards and 14 touchdowns. Mix in the return yards and he ended his Montgomery Catholic playing career with 8,059 all-purpose yards and 90 touchdowns.
In all of that, he became the top player on Auburn’s big board and committed to play for the Tigers in July after three campus visits. Cobb had the opportunity to sign a National Letter December 21 – the first day of the NCAA’s early signing period – but chose to forgo the autograph session (per media reports) to sign in February on the traditional National Signing Day to be with his teammates who are also going to play at the next level.
“We, the Catholic Community, are so proud of him and excited to watch him at the next level,” said Johnson.
Cobb is just one of the best players from within the CAScoreboard Coverage Community. Scroll down and meet the rest of the 2022 Football Super 22
No. 2 | Colton Walls – Stanhope Elmore
Tie No. 3 | Peyton Stephenson – Elmore County
Tie No. 3 | Logan Weighall – Wetumpka
No. 5 | Luke Harkless – Montgomery Catholic
No. 6 | Anthony Rogers – Pike Road
No. 7 | DM Lieux – Trinity Presbyterian
No. 8 | KJ Jackson – Saint James
Tie No. 9 | Caden Griffith – Tallassee
Tie No. 9 | Jaden Jones – Montgomery Catholic
No. 10 | Gabe Benton – Benjamin Russell
No. 11 | Caleb McCreary – Montgomery Catholic
No. 12 | Nate Rogers – Wetumpka
No. 13 | Ethan James – Saint James
No. 14 | Vysen Lang – Pike Road
No. 15 | Justin Crumbaugh – Wetumpka
No. 16 | Jacob Hollon – Prattville Christian
No. 17 | Harrison Johnson – Trinity Presbyterian
No. 18 | Shawn Brackett – Holtville
No. 19 | Kameran Shanks – Prattville
No. 20 | Logan Dillard – Reeltown
No. 21 | Gabe Russo – Montgomery Catholic
No. 22 | Cade Everson – Tallassee
ON THE BUBBLE
- Ziggy Holloway – Saint James
- Dorian Jackson – Wetumpka
- Jabari Murphy – Elmore County
- Jackson Thomas – Stanhope Elmore
- Corri Milliner – Benjamin Russell
- Keiland Baker – Holtville
- Garrett Allen – Elmore County
- Rod Favor – Trinity Presbyterian
- Seawell McKee- Trinity Presbyterian
- Malik Blocton – Pike Road
Jacobie Jenkins – Wetumpka
Josh Palmer – Montgomery Catholic
Brady Amerson – Wetumpka
Braxton Berry – Saint James
Zach Underwood – Montgomery Catholic
Tae Martin – Reeltown
LJ Green – Montgomery Catholic
Malachi Algood – Thorsby
Deshaun Caffee – Stanhope Elmore
Philstavious Dowdell – Dadeville
Austin Gray – Tallassee
Mason Battle – Tallassee
Ethan Alston – Holtville
Baylor Cannon – Marbury
CJ Wilkes – Elmore County
Drew Pickett – Russell County
Malcolm Simmons – Benjamin Russell
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