Hueytown's Winston Is The Real Deal

HUEYTOWN -- Two of the top high school quarterbacks in Alabama squared off in a first round 5A playoff match up, and both lived up to the hype as Paul W. Bryant of Tuscaloosa traveled to Hueytown Friday night.

Hueytown's Jameis Winston out-dueled  Broderick Hall of Paul W. Bryant, both statistically and on the scoreboard, but Hall certainly held his own. In the end, the home team won out, 35-14. Winston accounted for all five Hueytown scores, and Hall did likewise for the Stampede. (By the way, the Bryant mascot is a stampede of elephants, for the record.)

Winston will take his show on the road next week when the Golden Gophers (10-1) travel to Demopolis. The Stampede finished 6-5. To the categories:  

    TOP PROSPECT: Winston, without a doubt. The legend continues. If you haven't seen him play in person, you should. Bama is in great shape to land him, and he's just fun to watch. The 6-3 gun-slinger finished (unofficially) 15-23 passing for 174 yards and four touchdowns. He rushed for another 54 yards on eight carries, scrambling for a 14-yard score. He punted twice for a 30-yard average, and returned a kickoff for 17 yards.

         "I thought he played solid," said Hueytown coach Matt Scott. "I thought we had some problems protecting him early, and we thought we could do some things in the throwing game. He had a solid night."

         Said Stampede coach Bobby Moore, "He's a really good player, who makes plays. He can hurt you with his legs, and he can hurt you with his arm, too. He's a lot like Brock, actually."

         Winston now has 2,153 passing yards and 15 TDs this year.

         On one play, it appeared Winston was about to be sacked, but he scrambled around for what seemed like an eternity before lofting a 29-yard scoring strike to a wide open Hunter Scott. Yes, Hunter is the coach's son. Winston also had TD tosses of 19, 15 and 20 yards.

         SENIORS WHO SHINED: Hall, listed at 6-2, 195, looks and plays bigger. He was 0-3 passing at the half, then caught fire to finish 9-26, with 162 yards. He ran for another 69 yards, scoring twice on 12 totes.

         "Brock did a really good job, all night," Moore said. He threw the ball well, and he ran the ball well. He made some plays. He's a really good football player."

         "Hall's really good. He had a real good game against us last year," Scott said. "We just could not stop him. He made some phenomenal plays tonight, as did Jameis."

         Hueytown running back Ronald Stewart (5-8, 160) continues to crank out the yards. He cranked out a yeoman-like 172 yards on 20 tries.

         JUNIORS TO WATCH: Bryant offensive lineman Brandon Daniels at 6-3, 340, may one day shut down as many buffets as I have, but for now he must work hard in the off-season to give himself a shot to play at the next level.

         Hueytown defensive back Jeremy Dancy (5-6, 150) is not likely done growing. He has good ball skills.

         SUPER SOPHS: Bryant wide receiver Christopher Moore-Odum (5-10, 160) has a chance to flourish in Moore's offense the next two seasons.

         HISTORY IN THE MAKING: Talk about snapping a long slump. In its history, the football team at Arab High School had never won a playoff game. That all changed Friday, when the Arabian Knights shocked Muscle Shoals, 8-7. They are dancing in the streets of Arab, I tell ya!

        HOW CAN THIS BE? I know we're not supposed to believe in global warming, and just accept the fact that fall only lasts about two weeks these days. That said, it was COLD Friday night, and after spending over 10 minutes in line at the concession stand at half time, I was none too happy when informed that hot chocolate, a long-time staple at playoff games, was not available. I love ya, Hueytown folks, but that is just not acceptable. I bet Demopolis has it when you play them there next week.

         HOW ‘BOUT THAT: At long last, FNL got to check out Uncle Sam's BBQ, located on Allison- Bonnett Boulevard in Hueytown. It's easy to tell this joint used to be a Johnny Ray's, which is not a bad thing. I tried the combo plate featuring ribs, pork, chicken and beef. I cannot eat as much as I once could, and will get two additional meals out of what I took home. What I did manage to put down was pleasing to the palate. The ribs were tender, the pork was melt-in-your-mouth tasty, and the chicken was just like they serve it at Johnny Ray's, which is good.

         NEXT UP: FNL plans to  check out the UA hoops season opener Friday at Coleman Coliseum. The buzz about freshman point guard Trevor Releford has created a curiosity that needs to be quenched. If that doesn't work out, I shall come up with a second round match up of some interest to recruiting, but most likely the football FNL will resume in round three of the state playoffs. At that time, all the pretenders are gone, and only contenders remain for berths in the 2010 Super Six at Auburn's Jordan-Haire Stadium.

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