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Pair of Marengo County juniors haul in state honors

Collectively, they rushed for 4,887 yards, or just under 2.8 miles, this season. Friday, the tandem was mentioned together for the second time this week as Class 5A Back of the Year winner DaMarcus James of Demopolis High School and Class 1A Back of the Year winner Kendarius Fritts of Linden were each named on the list of the ASWA’s Super 12, a grouping aimed at identifying the 12 best players in the state regardless of position or classification.

But as much as the accolades may have been earned, the statistical output by the tandem has failed to surprise anyone involved with their respective programs.

“Heck, we expect it from him,” head coach Tom Causey said of James, who now totals more than 5,000 yards through his junior season after rushing for 2,529 yards and 19 touchdowns this year. “You kind of take it for granted when you have him around in practice everyday. He gets more humble with every award he receives. He understands that these things don’t happen unless he plays on a team that has been as successful as we have.”

Linden head coach Andro Williams has adopted a similar approach to his star back’s success.

“At the end of the day, we don’t get cuaght up in the individual awards picture. But we know it’s a privilege,” Williams, whose team has had a Class 1A Back or Lineman of the Year winner for two consecutive years, said. “If we have a bunch of individuals on our team, we don’t have anybody who wins lineman of the Year or Back of the Year. Both years, I think it was a team effort as far as those guys getting those awards.”

While they may be compared by college scouts and local football fans for the better part of the next year, James and Fritts, who tallied 2,358 yards and 33 touchdowns, will likely appear together only one more time when each attends the ASWA Mr. Football banquet in Birmingham next month.