The first Alabama high school wrestling rankings are out, and to no one’s surprise, Arab sits atop the Class 1A-5A heap, just ahead of defending state champion Moody (see the complete rankings on page 5).
Not only is Arab ranked No. 1, several individual Knights are ranked in the top 6 of their weight classes. The highest ranked is Caleb Roe, No. 1 at 160 pounds.
Jacob Holland is tied for second in 113; Austin Silva is second in 120; Patrick Lawler is third in 138; Ryan Morelan is third in 182; Sam Atchley is third in 195; Michael Robertson is second in 220; and Zac Pugh is third in 285.
Coaches vote on the rankings, and they are compiled by Murray Zogg, an assistan coach at Tuscaloosa. Updates in each weight class will be done bi-weekly as more matches are held and more coaches provide information.
• There have been some rumblings this week out of Auburn – site of the Super 7 football championships – about realignment for 2020 and 2021.
There is little hard information to report yet, but rumors I’m hearing are that Arab will be in Region 8 for the next two years, along with Mae Jemison and Lee-Huntsville. Well, if that’s the case, that could mean Arab is moving up to Class 6A. Those two teams played in 6A, Region 8 the last two years. Arab played in Region 8 in Class 5A.
It could be that Mae Jemison and Lee drop to 5A due to their enrollments dropping. In that case, who stays and who goes in 5A Region 8 is anyone’s guess at this point, though you know Arab would want to keep rivals – and region rivals – Guntersville and Brewer in the region mix.
This does more close tie in with something else I heard recently: Arab is staying in 5A.
Arab head coach Lee Ozmint said he knows nothing right now except that he’s heard an official announcement is coming Dec. 17.
• Older Braves fans may have some interest in this. Dale Murphy might finally get in on the Modern Hall of Fame ballot. This is the same group that shocked the world and elected Harold Baines last season.
Baines was a very good player over a lot of seasons. But a Hall of Famer? Murphy, meanwhile, won two National League MVP awards and at one time seemed a cinch for the Hall of Fame.
One thing is for certain: He’s a Hall of Fame person.
Anyway, nine former big league players and one executive comprise the 10-name Modern Baseball Era ballot to be reviewed and voted upon Sunday at the Baseball Winter Meetings.
Murphy, Dwight Evans, Steve Garvey, Tommy John, Don Mattingly, Marvin Miller, Thurman Munson, Dave Parker, Ted Simmons and Lou Whitaker are the candidates the Modern Baseball Era Committee will consider for Hall of Fame election for the Class of 2020.
All candidates are former players except for Miller, who was the head of the Major League Baseball Players Association from 1966-82. All candidates except for Miller and Munson are living.
Any candidate who receives votes on 75 percent of the ballots cast by the 16-member Modern Baseball Era Committee will earn election to the National Baseball Hall of Fame and will be inducted in Cooperstown on July 26, 2020, along with any electees who emerge from the 2020 Baseball Writers’ Association of America election, to be announced on Jan. 21, 2020.
The Modern Baseball Era is one of four Era Committees, each of which provide an avenue for Hall of Fame consideration to managers, umpires and executives, as well as players retired for more than 15 seasons.