Coach Spotlight: Reggie Ragland
"We were playing at Oxford," said Rose. "With six seconds left in the game we're ahead 48-45. Reggie leaps up and blocks their 35-yard field goal attempt to preserve the win for us."
The next year at Bob Jones, which is in the Huntsville area, Rose took the reigns as head coach and put Ragland at tight end where he went on to 1st team 6A All-State honors as a sophomore. Ragland again moved to linebacker this past season and again was named 1st team 6A All-State.
"Reggie's got an NFL body at 6-3, 245," said Rose. "Linebacker is probably where he'll play at the next level, but there are quite a few teams who'd love to have him at tight end. Reggie's very explosive to the ball. For someone his size, he can really move and make solid tackles. He's in outstanding shape being a standout player at both basketball and baseball as well."
In 2010, Ragland led the Patriots to the school's first 6A title in basketball. He can also play a mean centerfield. He comes from a athletically gifted family. His older brother, Chris "Man Child" White, was a football star at Huntsville's Virgil I. Grissom High School and his uncle, Rayfield Ragland, was a four-sport star at Coffee High School and went on to play basketball at Clemson and professionally overseas.
"I'm not sure if he plans on playing basketball in college," said Rose. "He could be like Charles Barkley in the post. His ability at either sport would give him a ticket to a college scholarship."
In late December of last year, Ragland gave Head Coach Nick Saban a belated Christmas present in the form of a commitment to the University of Alabama. At the time, he also had offers from Auburn and Kentucky with many more knocking on the door.
"He's solid to Alabama," said Rose. "You'd have to ask him why he chose them over some of the other colleges interested in him, but I know they were on him early. He was playing varsity basketball in the 8th grade at Grissom, and coaches were talking to him all the way back then."
Now that his commitment is behind him as well as basketball season Rose and Ragland will look to start preparing for next fall. In 2009, the Patriots fell to Hoover 34-24 without Ragland in the 3rd round of the state playoffs. Ragland sustained a high ankle injury late in the season which required surgery. They had the powerhouse Bucs on the ropes in their final regular season game in 2010.
"We led them in the 4th quarter 13-6," said Rose on the Hoover game. "We ended up losing the game 20-13. They next week we got beat by a touchdown by Clay-Chalkville to finish 8-3.
"I don't put a lot of pressure on my players. I don't want to see them play tight and press. I want to see Reggie working hard, but I want him to have fun and let it fly."
Rose says he'll give Ragland some time off, but after spring break they will go at it hard in the weight room and the practice field. Through all the accolades and recruiting, Rose says Ragland has stayed focused and kept a level-head.
"Reggie plays AAU basketball where he's received a lot of attention," said Rose. "Plus all the attention he gets from football. He's remained very humble. He's always been a ‘yes sir- no sir' kid, very polite and from a good family."
Reggie Ragland wears No. 19 for the Patriots. Coach Rose expects to use him more at tight end this season due to depth and Ragland's big play ability.
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