Roll Tide Roll

Published 12:00 am Friday, November 26, 2004

What is life like as a University of Alabama football player?

Former Brantley star athlete and current Tide multi-purpose player Marcel Stamps took time out of his busy schedule to answer that question Monday afternoon during the Luverne Rotary Club's weekly luncheon.

Stamps, who is the first football player from Brantley to earn a Division 1A scholarship, explained his everyday routine as a Bama player. He starts his days with workouts at 5:30 a.m. followed by classes from 8 a.m. until 1 p.m. and film review from 1:30 p.m. until 4 p.m. The Tide practices from 4 p.m. until 6 p.m. and Stamps day concludes with a two-hour study hall session

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"It's like when I lay my head down on my pillow, I have to pick it right back up," Stamps said with a smile.

During his freshman season, Stamps has seen playing time on special teams and at linebacker. Like at Brantley, he sports the No. 6 jersey on the Tide's roster.

Stamps said having been raised in such a good community helped him adapt to the changes at the university and the hard work it requires to be a part of the football program.

"It has been an honor to have Crenshaw County as a stepping stone," he said.

Stamps' hard work on the gridiron isn't a surprise to Crenshaw County Superintendent of Education Kathi Wallace, who was principal at Brantley up until Stamps' sophomore year. She introduced him at the meeting.

"He was always willing to do whatever," Wallace said. "He's what I call a teacher and principal's dream."

Although Stamps has a strong work ethic, he admitted that it gets hard at times to push himself through the day.

"I have to challenge myself to finish strong," Stamps said.

Standing 6-foot-3, 205-pound, Stamps said he enjoys playing linebacker, but said an ideal size would be about 245 pounds if he wants to continue his playing career.

"I enjoy playing linebacker, but those lineman are huge," Stamps said. "I'm only 205 pounds and they're throwing me around. You've got to have size."

During his first season, Stamps has had the opportunity to travel to and suit up in several stadiums. He said he encountered his loudest stadium in Knoxville, Tenn. when the Tide took on the Tennessee Volunteers.

"When they say 110,000 fans, they mean 110,000 fans," Stamps said.

Stamps also had some comments to share about the hospitality LSU showed Bama players.

"They talked about us the whole time we were there," he said.

Classroom work also keeps Stamps busy. In fact, he's a lot busier with class work than most Tide players.

"The maximum credit hours for a football player is 12, but I decided to have 15 because I'm trying to get out in three years," he said.

Stamps suffered a high ankle sprain against Tennessee, the eighth game of the season. He has only seen limited action since his injury.

"I'm looking to be back for the bowl game," he said.

It's still not definite what bowl game Alabama will play in this season.