Lincoln junior offensive lineman Shedrick Thomas earned first team All-State honors in Class 4A.
Thomas played a huge part in the Golden Bears (6-6) success this season. Lincoln’s season came to an end in second round of the AHSAA playoffs with a 55-42 loss to Marion County. The junior lineman is elated to earn first-team honors.
“It is exciting,” Thomas said. “When you work hard things happen.”
Thomas is the first Golden Bear to earn All-State honors since 2010 when Desmond Wills earned honorable mention honors.
The 6-foot-3, 270-pound lineman averaged three pancake blocks per game. Garnering such an accomplishment makes the junior want to work even harder in the off-season.
“At first, I played football just to play, but now I am getting dedicated,” Thomas said. “I am going to go to camps, go to all the summer workouts and work even harder to get better.”
Sylacauga offensive lineman Brett Medforth earned honorable mention honors in Class 5A.
The senior helped the Aggies to go 8-3 and earn a playoff berth.
“I am very excited,” Medforth, said. “I am the second All-State player since my coach has been here. It is a big accomplishment.”
The 6-foot-4, 260-pound lineman was dominant upfront for the Aggies. Medforth averaged seven pancake blocks per game this season.
“I didn’t expect it,” Medforth said. “I wanted to try, of course, but didn’t think I would actually get it. I was hoping that I got All-State, but I wasn’t expecting it.”
Medforth committed to Troy University last summer. He became the first Sylacauga football player to commit to a Division I program since Golinsky Smith committed to UAB in 1998.
“We are excited about it,” Sylacauga head coach Matt Griffith said.
“This is probably the first lineman honorable mention All-State player that we have had in a long time at this school. This is only the second kid that we have had to make honorable mention All-State in the eight years that I have been here. We are very proud of it. I tell folks, Brett to me is one the most dominating lineman we’ve had come through here, especially since I have been here. I may be wrong saying this, but I think he may be the first true Division I lineman that we have had sign since John Hand in the early 80s. Everybody knows that we play with a smaller kid up front here and we have done it for years. When you get a kid like Brett that is 6-4, 265 pounds that can block and come off the ball the way he does, it is a rarity for us. We are really proud of him.”
Ahmad Gooden became the first Talladega player since DeAndre Wilson in 2006 to make the All-State team.
I think it is a big step in my high school career,” Gooden said. “When coach Mahand told me, I was surprised, but at the same time, I know I was on the field putting in the work. It feels good to see that your hard work pays off.”
Gooden led the Tigers (3-9) with 77 tackles, including 13 for loss.
“Making All-State really wasn’t my goal, but at times I would think about it,” Gooden said. “I was just thinking about going out there and playing at 110 percent every game. I guess that is what it leads too when you go out there and give it your all.”
Talladega head coach Chris Mahand believes that Gooden has what it takes to be the best athlete to come from Talladega High School.
“He is a young man that has been starting for me since his freshman year,” Mahand said. “He has always been a ball player for us and as the years gone by he has gotten better. I am expecting some big things from him in his senior year. He has the potential to be one of the best athletes that come out of Talladega High School.”