Southside’s Mack leads by example

Published 5:14pm Saturday, March 23, 2013

After helping lead his team to a Class 3A title game appearance with his play on both ends of the floor, Southside senior forward Jeffery Mack is the player of the year.

Mack was instrumental during Southside’s 24-10 season, including averaging 15.5 points, 13.5 rebounds, 2.5 blocks and 4 steals during the Class 3A final four.

Mack was recognized for his play on the state level, as he was recently named first team all-state for Class 3A by the Alabama Sports Writers Association.

Southside head coach Cedric Brown said Mack was one of the anchors in the paint for the Panthers, and is a very versatile player.

“Jeffery was a two-year starter for me. I had moved him up late as a 10th grader. He’s performed pretty well. He and [Octavious] Gulley, they were our anchor men down low. Anything that came off the glass, I expected Jeffery and Gulley to get it,” Brown said. “My philosophy of coaching is to get five guys on the floor at one time that can handle the ball, and Jeffery, he could do that for us. He could snatch the ball off the rim and pretty much push it up the floor. In one possession, Jeffery could possibly have a rebound and an assist, or a rebound and points. He was great for us.”

Mack said he just played hard to help lead the Panthers to the final.

“My role was to lead the team to Birmingham, and we did that. It didn’t end up how we wanted it to end up, but we made it there,” Mack said.

While he enjoys defense, Mack said there’s something special about hitting big shots on the offensive end.

“I play defense, but I play offense better than defense,” Mack said. “I made big plays on defense at times, like I get blocks, but on offense I could do a little better. The excitement that comes from when you hit shots, you just get to feeling it. I like just having fun, really.”

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