Local high schools host recognition days for Senior Bowl players

Updated: Feb. 4, 2022 at 5:51 PM CST
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MOBILE, Ala. (WALA) - It was a day of celebration as four of our local Senior Bowl players had recognition ceremonies at their high schools. Murphy High School recognized LSU defensive tackle Neil Farrell Jr.

American Football
American Football(WILX)

The 2019 national champion was presented with his high school jersey in front of a packed crowd in the auditorium.

“Coming back to my hometown. The principal doing this pep rally for me, giving back to me and showing they appreciate me,” said Farrell. “It’s a blessing and an honor to come back and receive this.

Over in Saraland, it was Velus Jones Jr day for the Spartans.

After making one last entrance to his school’s fight song, jones received a key to the city before head coach Jeff Kelly presented him with his newly retired number three jersey.

“Words can’t describe enough how it feels. I can never repay anybody back for this,” said Jones. “With the love and support I’ve had throughout this career I didn’t do it alone. I had a strong team with me, I had a lot of people who believed in me.”

It was a similar sight at Williamson High School for Auburn defensive back Roger McCreary. McCreary was welcomed back to the Lions’ den by the Williamson marching band and a video tribute before receiving a special proclamation.

All before fellow Williamson greats Nick Fairley and Antonio Coleman presented McCreary with something he’s dreamed about.

“We now officially retire your Williamson High School jersey,” said Williamson principal Kirven Lang.

“It’s something I always dreamed of. I never thought this day would happen to me so I’m just really grateful I had the opportunity to do this,” said McCreary.

And over in midtown, McGill-Toolen honored wide receiver Jalen Tolbert. Tolbert won a state championship at McGill before breaking records at South Alabama on his way to becoming the fourth Senior Bowl player in McGill’s history.

“It’s definitely a blessing, a special moment and hopefully I can impact some people’s lives that were in here,” said Tolbert.

Safe to say he already has

“Seeing the success that Jalen’s had is really inspiring. Just seeing him come out and do what he do,” said South Alabama commit Braylon McReynolds. “Now that he has a shot to go to the next level which is one of my goals. It’s awesome to see that. I plan to do the same.”