Countdown: Etowah County’s All-time Top 15 High School Football Teams


Football Fridays are a cultural landmark in the communities of Etowah County. From the streets of Gadsden and Attalla to the back roads of Walnut Grove and Hokes Bluff, faithful followers anxiously await their team’s next contest.

Young players annually,endure the brutal heat of Alabama’s summers to earn a spot on their school’s roster and hopefully etch themselves into local football legacy.

In honor of the 2011 high school football season, The Messenger is reflecting upon the golden days of local football seasons gone by. To spark the interests of fans and former players and coaches, the Messenger has selected its the top 15 high school football teams from Etowah County and Gadsden City from 1950-1986.

Why 15 teams? In Alabama there are 15 weeks in a high school football season from the opening game to the state championship. The Messenger will reveal a team each week, beginning with No. 15, and will provide an in-depth analysis of that team’s performance, players, awards and success.

Team rankings are based on many factors, including statistics and winning percentage.

Teams ranked thus far are:

No. 15 – 1982 Hokes Bluff Eagles

No. 14 – 1984 Gaston Bulldogs

No. 13 – 1986 West End Patriots

No. 12 – 1980 Southside Panthers

No. 11 – 1966 Sardis Lions/1966 West End Patriots

No. 10 – 1968 Gadsden Tigers

No. 9 – 1958 Etowah Blue Devils

No. 8 – 1979 West End Patriots

No. 7 – 1973 Glencoe Yellow Jackets

No. 6 – 1957 Gadsden Tigers

No. 5 – 1957 Carver Wildcats

No. 4 – 1984 Emma Sansom Rebels

No. 3 – 1962 Altoona Choctaws

No. 2 – 1963 Hokes Bluff Eagles

No. 1 – ??

Copies of The Messenger’s Annual Football Preview 2011 featuring an in-depth article on the 1954 Altoona Choctaws are still available at the office upon request.

Copies of all weeks’ teams are available but limited for anyone wishing to collect all 15 editions. Copies may be picked up at The Messenger office located at 408 Broad Street in downtown Gadsden.

Be sure to pick up this week’s edition of The Messenger to read about the top classic football team from Etowah County.

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