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Seven #039;Super Seniors#039;

Covington County is home to some of the best high school senior football players in the state.

Seven players from the county were selected to The Birmingham News' list of top senior high school football players in the state or "Super Seniors" as judged by sports writers and recruiters.

The No. 1 senior in Alabama, and the preseason favorite for the prestigious 2004 Mr. Football Award is Cullman High School linebacker/defensive end Justin Britt.

Covington County is represented by three Straughn Tigers, two Red Level Tigers, one Opp Bobcat and one Andalusia Bulldog.

Andalusia is represented on the list of top 100 high school senior football players by wide receiver Neal Patterson. The 6-2, 170-pound wide receiver is being recruited by college coaches. He is also a top baseball player for the Bulldogs.

The other Class 4A player on the list of the top 100 seniors is Opp High School tight end/defensive end Alphonso Harris. The 6-4, 225-pound Harris is also a basketball player for the Bobcats.

Covington County's top Class 3A seniors are all members of the Straughn Tigers, according to The News' list. Linebacker Brent Nall (6-2, 220) is the lone defensive player from Straughn on the list. He is joined by big offensive lineman Garrett Windham (6-7, 285) and running back Michael Hobbs (5-10, 180).

In Class 2A, the Red Level Tigers have two seniors on The News' list in offensive lineman Randall Hunt (6-4, 310) and linebacker Larry Hudson (5-11, 180).

High school football fans have at least seven reasons to attend games this fall, but the list compiled by The News does not mean there are not other super seniors ready to burst onto the scene.

The 2004 season has yet to begin and while seven seniors from Covington County have been recognized as "players to watch" that does not mean more super seniors are not out there ready to shine.

Regardless of who is or who is not on The News' list, high school football fans in Covington County can expect to see some of the state's best senior high school football players this fall.

The season will be a test for all of the teams, coaches and players. It will be interesting to see who is among the state's elite high school senior football players when the final second ticks off the scoreboard clock at Legion Field in Birmingham, where the state championship games will be played.