Archived Story

Behind the wall

Published 8:43am Tuesday, August 14, 2012

No. 6 Reeltown High School is no stranger to the Class 2A football rankings, and even less a stranger to a strong running game.
Year after year, the Rebels have a runningback that enters the season as one of the top in Class 2A, however the true success of those runningbacks depends on the offensive line that is blocking for them.
Standing his ground on the Reeltown offensive line in his senior season is 2011 All-State offensive guard Jay Stephens.
“A lot of people that played at Reeltown know how important the line is, but we are used to not getting credit from other people,” said Stephens, a senior who will anchor the Rebels up front in 2012.
“The runningbacks and other play makers may get the attention, but it takes an entire team to win a title.”
Stephens was unknown to most football observers heading into his junior season last year, but the guard made his own imprint on the Rebels run game, as they averaged 245 yards per game on the ground last season.
“We have almost all of the guys returning on the offensive line this season,” said Stephens, who squats 425 pounds and bench presses 240.
“We’re ready to lead this team and show the younger guys what it takes to win games.”
Stephens cleared the way for three runningbacks last season that all return in 2012 in Tywone Stewart, James Smith and Jim Parks.
“It’s fun to block for those guys because of what they can do,” said Stephens of his offensive mates heading into the 2012 season.
“We want to go to the state championship and win it.”
As far as Stephens’ individual goals … his sights are once again set high.
“I want to make All-State again and go out on top,” said Stephens, who has already accepted an academic scholarship to Auburn University.
Stephens was awarded the scholarship as Reeltown High Schools representative at Boys State, and says that college football is something that remains up in the air.
“I have a great thing with the academic scholarship to Auburn right now,” said Stephens.
“I haven’t heard from too many colleges for football, so  if the opportunity for that happens, I’ll think about it more.”
Stephens and the Rebels kick off the 2012 season at Dadeville High School on Aug. 30.
See The Outlook throughout the rest of August for player profiles of the 2012 Outlook Super-12 Football Team.