Smith named Selma Times-Journal player of the year

Published 10:41 am Wednesday, December 27, 2023

Southside wide receiver Derick Smith continues to catch on with NCAA Football Bowl Subdivision (FBS) Schools.

Smith is named The Selma Times-Journal football player of the year after a stellar junior season, in which he had over 1,000 yards rushing and 1,000 yards receiving.  Smith ran 65 times for 1,036 yards and nine touchdowns. Smith caught 46 passes for 1,487 yards and 14 touchdowns. He also ran 78 times for 289 yards and two TDs. Defensively, Smith had 109 total tackles and a Pick-6.

“I feel good about getting named the Selma Times-Journal player of the year,” Smith said.

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Smith’s 6-foot-4 inch frame and athletic talents are unique, but credits his success to the Panthers.

“I care about the team, I don’t want the team to be second,” Smith said. “It’s not all  about me, its about the team.”

Southside head football coach Charles Moody praised Smith for his leadership on the field and off the field.

​​“Derick has a lot of instinctive motivation,” Moody said. ”He comes to work every day and continues to strive to be the best he can be. The better question is what he doesn’t do well,” Moody said. “We use him in so many ways. He plays every defensive position except for the line and on offense. On special teams, he can do anything.”

By January, Smith will be getting constant visits from major colleges, both at home and at Southside High School.

   Alabama, Auburn, Georgia, Ole Miss, Florida State, Florida and LSU  are the top schools on Smith’s radar.

“I will definitely commit to a school sometime next year,” Smith said.

Smith earned a Selma Times-Journal honor for the second straight year.  Smith was named Selma Times-Journal offensive Most Valuable player in 2022.

For three straight years, Smith was named All-State by the Alabama Sportswriters Association (ASWA).

Smith plans to end his Southside career with a scholarship, championship and diploma next year.