Throughout his prep career, Petal (Miss.) junior Anthony Alford has experienced much success on two athletic fronts. However, his success has continued to increase of late on the gridiron and the baseball diamond. After suffering a torn ACL late in his junior football campaign, the 6-foot-1 and 210-pound Alford spent countless hours rehabbing so he could return to baseball. Alford has done just that and his return helped lead Petal to the postseason.
Alford and the Panthers knocked off Oak Grove in the second round of the Class 6A playoffs over the weekend.
And on the gridiron, Alford received more good news when he was tabbed to the 2012 U.S. Army All-American game.
"That was definitely a good honor and one I consider a blessing," said Alford of the U.S. Army game invite. "And baseball has been going pretty good and we're in the third round now. Since I came back, I am hitting .570 with four home runs and about 20 RBIs. So I've had no problems with my knee and everything is back to normal."
Alford has also experienced success on both recruiting fronts, too.
"It's going pretty good and I have the same schools offering me in both sports," said Alford, who threw for 1,399 yards, rushed for 1,253 yards and accounted for 36 touchdowns last year. "And those schools are Tennessee, Mississippi State, Ole Miss, Southern Miss, Alabama, Clemson, LSU and Nebraska. LSU and Nebraska were my latest offers and it was good to get the LSU offer and the chance to talk to their head coach Les Miles."
Although he is currently not in spring football due to baseball, Alford noted several schools have stopped by to check on him.
"Alabama and Nebraska and LSU are coming by soon," said Alford. "And Coach Tony Hughes of Mississippi State came by last week. A lot of schools are wanting me to come to camps this summer. I know I will go to some but I am not sure yet with my baseball schedule. I know this summer I will be doing football during the week and then doing some baseball things on the weekends.
"But once baseball is done this spring, I will hopefully have time to do some spring football things. I hope to get my knee back stronger for football and get back to where I was. I will focus on passing a lot this offseason and those things that will make me better."
Expected to be a top-round MLB Draft selection next summer, Alford said he hasn't given that option much thought of late and won't do so until next year. He added he doesn't have a leader right now in either sport but would prefer to play both in college.
"Right now I don't have a leader or even a Top 3 or 4," said Alford. "I don't have a leader in football or baseball either. But right now I am leaning towards playing both sports in college."