The Orlando Sentinel's 2008 All-Southern football team, also known as the Dixie Dozen, has been released and includes two of the area's players of the year.
South Pointe's Stephon Gilmore and Northwestern's Jarrett Neely are among the 11 players on South Carolina's list. The Sentinel annually picks its top 11 players from 12 Southern states, reaching west to Texas and north to Virginia.
Gilmore and Neely were finalists for the South Carolina Mr. Football award, which Gilmore won from a group of eight finalists. Gilmore was also named offensive MVP in South Carolina's 24-16 win over North Carolina in the Shrine Bowl of the Carolinas All-Star Football Game earlier this month.
Gilmore, The Herald's Class AAAA player of the year, has committed to South Carolina and will be in Orlando this Sunday to play in the Under Armour All-American Game. The game will be carried on ESPN (cable channel 25 in Rock Hill) at 8 p.m.
Other South Carolina players in the game are South Pointe DB DeVonte Holloman (South Carolina), Calhoun County WR Alshon Jeffries (Southern Cal), Timberland OL Quinton Washington (undecided), Christ Church OL J.K. Jay (Clemson) and Greenwood DL Sam Montgomery (undecided).
Neely's stock is on the rise. He scored a 14-yard touchdown on his only carry in the Shrine Bowl, where he also played wide receiver and ran back kicks. According to the Sentinel, Neely, who was The Herald's offensive player of the year, is getting interest from Clemson, Duke and East Carolina.