E.A. Sports Today

More games canceled

State announces all All-Star Week games have been canceled; to date 14 players, coaches from Calhoun County have been named to squads, more expected through spring sports
By Al Muskewitz
East Alabama Sports Today
Jeff Smith remembers how excited the players were when he contacted them about being selected for the Alabama North-South All-Star Football Game in July. He could only imagine Monday how disappointed they are now there is no game.
AHSAA officials announced Monday all of the games of the All-Star Week have been canceled due to the coronavirus pandemic. The summer conference and coaching school associated with the week will now be a virtual conference.
Smith, Wellborn’s head football coach, was going to be head coach of the North football team. The team boasted six players from Calhoun County and stockpile of game-changing running backs from throughout North Alabama.
The team was picked on March 4. Two weeks later everyone was out of school because of COVID-19. Two months after they cancel the all-star games, a week after the AHSAA announced all summer competition was canceled.
“Jamie Lee (director of the Alabama coaches and athletics directors association) told me they were trying to do the all-star games. They wanted to keep doing it, that’s why they waited to today to release it,” Smith said. “They tried to se how they could get it worked out. Those kids wanted to get in there. It’s disappointing.
“I hate it because I thought we had picked a good (team) and had a lot of local flavor on it. We had some really good football players in this county and the surrounding area this past year. I would’ve sure liked to have seen them get out there and compete against those other kids in the state.”
After this year the all-star football game will move to December, the week after the annual Alabama-Mississippi All-Star Game. It is uncertain if the coaching staff from this year’s North-South Game would simply slide into the winter game – which would have an all new roster 2021 graduating seniors – but Smith said Lee told him that would be his recommendation if the coaches wanted to do it.
The all-star teams from the fall and winter sports have already been announced. The spring sports all-star teams began to be released today with the golf all-stars. Baseball, softball, soccer and tennis will be forthcoming.
White Plains’ Chris Randall was selected to coach the North boys golf team, a team that also included his players Kenny Okins and Gage Miller. Glencoe’s Jason Pierce was picked to coach the North girls.
To date, 11 players and three coaches from Calhoun County have been selected to the various All-Star Sports Week teams. Although no one will play now, all the all-stars will still be recognized by the state with all-star certificates.

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