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Davis to coach All-Star hoops

It doesn’t come close to bringing a 2A State Championship trophy home to Uniontown, but R.C. Hatch head basketball coach Homer Davis received another honor this month.

He was named an assistant coach for the 16th annual Alabama-Mississippi All-Star Basketball Game. The boys’ game will be played at 6 p.m. Thursday at the Pelham Civic Center outside of Birmingham. The girls game will precede it, at 5 p.m.

“This honor, to me, means a great opportunity to coach some of the top players and top talent in the state of Alabama,” Davis said, over the din of a rowdy physical education class he took time out from supervising.

“It’s a chance to be around (some of the state’s best players), have fun, and prepare them to beat Mississippi in the all-star game.”

Davis said he looks forward to getting an up-close view of many of the best hoop-stars the state of Alabama has to offer.

“I accept it as a blessing to be able to represent the state and coach the All-Stars,” he said. “Some of these guys we played against in the early part of the season.”

Davis will have the chance to continue coaching one of the Bobcats’ rising starts, Phillip Johnson, as well as

regular opponent Howard Crawford of Greene County High School.

Davis said he expects Johnson to be a major contributor during the game.

“I think he matches up perfectly, he can play all five positions,” Davis said. “He will blend in great, I think, with the other talent from the state of Alabama.”

Even as an assistant to head coach Danny Petty – who led Madison Academy to a 3A state title – Davis said the style of play will be fairly simliar to the way he runs a Bobcat game.

Like the All-Star team, R.C. Hatch is perennially loaded with top talent, so, “everybody gets playing time, five on, five off.”

Other members of the boys’ all-star team include Korielle Beavers of Saks, Anthony Brown and Tauras Dorteh of Ramsay, Crawford, Tyler Hanback of Madison Academy, Chris Hines of Hillcrest-Evergreen, Johnson, Delrico Lane of John Carroll, Curtis Nickson of Greene County, Jamarr Sanders of Jeff Davis, Jay-R Strowbridge of Sparkman and Justin Tubbs of Hewitt-Trussville.

The game could also present an opportunity for the Bobcats next basketball season. A few of the players he’ll help coach this week stumped the Bobcats during early season games.

“There’s this kid from Anniston,” Davis said, drawing a blank on the player’s name. “We played them early in the year and lost to them by 3 at the Francis Marion tournament. He was a great shooting guard. I’m looking forward to the chance to look at him a little, and see how he shoots.”

Player selections were made from nominations received from coaches of all classes from around the state. The selection committee is composed of the 2006 state championship coaches plus members of the basketball coaches’ committee.

This marks the fourth year for Pelham to host the game under an agreement with the City of Pelham and the Shelby County Commission.

Mayor Bobby Hayes of Pelham; Alex Dudchock, Shelby County manager; and Chris Hershey, Shelby County event planner, have led in the support of this series.