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Johnson: 'Two-A-Days' worth viewing

Tuesday, October 17, 2006

Most of the time, when you speak of two-a-days in football terms -- those hot days in the summer when football teams hold two practices a day in preparation of the upcoming season -- you get a negative response.

Over the past couple of months, a great number of you have shared with me how much you enjoyed watching the MTV hit reality show "Two-A-Days."

I've become "hooked" as well and made certain to fit it in my busy schedule every Wednesday night.

During football season, Wednesday night is when I always interview Shelbyville Central head football coach Jason Hardy about the upcoming Friday night game.

If I couldn't get in touch with him before the show came on, I would wait until it was over.

A couple of times coach Hardy returned my call during the middle of the show and I informed him that I would call him back later.

"Two-A-Days" is centered on the football team at Hoover (Ala.) High.

The show followed the team during 2005 as they competed for their fourth consecutive Class 6A state championship, while balancing school and the everyday life of being a teenager.

It kind of reminded me of the "Dateline NBC" documentary on the Shelbyville Golden Eaglettes and former coach Rick Insell a couple of years ago.

Both teams were top programs in the nation with great community support and outstanding, demanding head coaches.

I thought I would share a few things about the show and the Hoover football program in general.

Hoover City Schools and MTV recently announced plans for a second season of "Two-A-Days," to air in early 2007.

Film crews began filming a few weeks ago, starting with Hoover's week 6 game against John Curtis Christian High School of River Ridge, La.

John Curtis rallied from a 14-0 first-quarter deficit to defeat Hoover 28-14. At the time Hoover was the No. 1 ranked team in the nation and John Curtis was No. 6. The game was nationally televised on ESPNU.

Hoover safety Max Lerner was the only graduating senior cast member to earn a Division I scholarship, at Division I-AA Furman. Another non-featured senior, Cornelius Williams accepted an offer to play at Div. I-A Troy.

Cast member Dwarn "Repete" Smith walked on at Auburn last fall but quit. He later declared his intentions to walk on again in 2007.

Alex Binder accepted a baseball scholarship to Bevill State Community College in Sumiton, Ala., but was arrested and charged with breaking and entering into a motor vehicle last summer.

Quarterback Ross Wilson, who is now playing his senior season, has declared his intent to play college baseball at Alabama.

The 2007 senior class, which will be the focus of the second season, is considered by some recruiters to be superior to the class portrayed in the series' first season.

There's no wonder why MTV selected Hoover for this series.

They have a reputation as an athletic powerhouse, claiming 31 state championships in the past five years. Sports Illustrated recently named Hoover the nation's 17th best prep athletics program.

The school spends about $490,000 a year on athletics salaries, benefits and coaching supplements, including a reported $87,426 salary for head football coach Rush Propst.

As you might guess, Propst has been accused of recruiting, but he denies he's ever recruited players.

Hoover High doesn't have to recruit players.

Winning championships recruits for Hoover.

Times-Gazette sports writer Gary Johnson covers Shelbyville Central High athletics.

Gary Johnson
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