Super 7 Primer: Here’s What You Need To Know To Compete In This Week’s HS Championships
The Super 7 returns to Birmingham this week for the first time since 2008.
Matches will no longer be played in historic Legion Field, where they were played for a dozen years.
This week’s games will be played at the new Protective Stadium, which in turn joins Auburn’s Jordan-Hare Stadium and Alabama’s Bryant-Denny Stadium to crown the AHSAA football champions.
Here’s a quick rundown of what you need to know this week.
Flag Football Girls
Hewitt-Trussville (10-0) vs. Smiths Station (10-2), 3 p.m.
Thompson (12-1) vs. Central-Phenix City (13-0), 7 p.m.
Piedmont (12-2) vs Montgomery Academy (11-3), 11 a.m.
Wadley (13-1) vs. Sweet Water (13-0), 3 p.m.
Pleasant Grove (12-1) vs. Pike Road (13-0), 7 p.m.
Oneonta (13-1) vs. Vigor (13-1), 11 a.m.
Cleveland (12-2) v Clarke County (12-2), 3 p.m.
Clay-Chalkville (14-0) vs. Hueytown (13-1), 7 p.m.
TV / Radio coverage
All eight games will be televised live on the AHSAA television network and broadcast live on the NFHS network. The AHSAA radio network will also broadcast all matches on its national network or its affiliated radios as well as on the Internet.
All tickets for the AHSAA Super 7 2021 will only be available for advance purchase and online through AHSAA’s digital ticketing partner, GoFan, by visiting https://gofan.co/AHSAA and will be $ 15 plus applicable GoFan fees.
Tickets will be available for purchase at the door and online through Ticketmaster starting Wednesday. All tickets will be a digital ticket produced on the buyer’s smartphone and no home printed tickets will be allowed.
All 2021 Super 7 general admission tickets are sold by individual match and the 2021 match schedule has been changed to accommodate all fans leaving the stadium between matches.
New place, new faces
Five schools that have never won a state football title will play in Birmingham this week.
These are Hueytown (6A), Pike Road (5A), Clarke County (2A), Cleveland (2A) and Wadley (1A).
In fact, not only did these schools not win a state title, but they never made it to the Super 7.
That changes this week.
There are, however, familiar enemies returning to Birmingham.
In Class 7A, Thompson won the last two state titles and played for the last three. Undefeated Warriors opponent Central-Phenix City is playing his third title game in four years. The Red Devils won the crown in 2018.
In Class 6A, Clay-Chalkville made consecutive trips in 2014 and 2015. The Cougars won the title under Jerry Hood in 2014 and lost to Spanish Fort the following year.
In Class 5A, Pleasant Grove is making his third straight Super 7 trip. The Spartans have lost the previous two years to Central-Clay County in 2019 and St. Paul’s in 2020.
Both representatives of class 4A have already been to the top of the mountain. Oneonta went three times in a row from 2011 to 2013, winning the title in the last of those years. Vigor went to the 5A title game in 2018, losing to Central-Clay County. Wolves won titles in 1987, 1988 and 2008.
In Class 3A, Piedmont has been a mainstay for the past decade. The Bulldogs have competed in the Super 7 five times since 2015, winning state titles in 2015, 2016 and 2019. They also won the title in 2009 – all in 3A. Their opponent, Montgomery Academy, returns to the title game for the first time since 1987. The Eagles won the 1A crown that year under Jack Tatum.
Finally, in Class 1A, Eau Douce is back. The Bulldogs have 10 state championships on their resume, the latest in 2017.
Four teams will come to Protective Stadium to end perfect seasons.
Central-Phenix City (13-0), Clay-Chalkville (14-0), Pike Road (13-0) and Sweet Water (13-0) all have unblemished records.
Only two teams ranked No.1 in their standings in the Alabama Sports Writers Association final prep standings will play for a title.
Class 6A No. 1 Clay-Chalkville and Class 5A No. 1 Pike Road held these spots at the end of the regular season.
Here’s how each of the Super 7 teams ranked in the latest ASWA 2021 poll:
7A: Thompson (2), Central-Phenix City (3)
6A: Clay-Chalkville (1), Hueytown (7)
5A: Pike Road (1), Pleasant Grove (2)
4A: Oneonta (NR), Stamina (3)
3A: Piedmont (4), Montgomery Academy (NR)
2A: Cleveland (7), Clarke County (2)
1A: Wadley (8), freshwater (2)
Public vs Private?
Not this year.
Critics of private schools won’t have much to complain about this year.
Only one school out of 14 finalists is private – Montgomery Academy in 3A.
Madison Academy and Mars Hill both lost in the semi-finals on Friday night.
Last year, two of the seven titles were won by private schools – St. Paul’s in 5A and Mars Hill in 2A.
Some of the state’s best rookies will be on display this week.
Here are some of the top ranked juniors and seniors who will compete for state titles.
Class of 2022
Rankings for 247 composite rankings
1. Jeremiah Alexander, EDGE, Thompson (Alabama commission)
3. Khurtiss Perry, DL, Pike Road (not entered)
5. Tre’Quon Fegans, DB, Thomson (Alabama)
17. JQ Hardaway, DB, Central-Phenix City (Cincinnati)
22. Marquarius White, WR, Clay-Chalkville (Tennessee)
23. Quinshon Judkins, RB, Pike Road (Ole Miss)
27. Khalib Johnson, QB, Clay-Chalkville (Louisville)
28. Ryan Peppins, WR, Thompson (Utah)
29. Conner Harrell, QB, Thompson (North Carolina)
Class of 2023
2. Tony Mitchell, DB, Thompson (not hired)
4. Peter Woods, DL, Thompson (not hired)
9. Tomarrion Parker, DL, Central-Phenix City (not engaged)
10. Karmello English, WR, Central-Phenix City (not entered)
The best coaches in the state
Some of Alabama’s top coaches will lead their teams this week.
The 14 head coaches involved combined to win 21 state titles.
Thompson’s Mark Freeman leads the way with 8 titles – two at Thompson, two at Spanish Fort and four at AISA Bessemer Academy.
Clarke County coach Stacy Luker, elected to the AHSAA Hall of Fame earlier this month, has five titles – all to his alma mater, Sweet Water. Piedmont coach Steve Smith has four titles with the Bulldogs.
The other titles belong to Patrick Nix of Central-Phenix City (2 in Pinson Valley), Pat Thompson of Sweet Water (1) and Robert Johnson of Montgomery Academy (1).