HATTIESBURG, MS (WDAM) - The Mississippi All-Stars wrapped up its third practice at Hattiesburg High school ahead of the 31st Mississippi/Alabama All-star game on Saturday at noon.
Although Saturday's contest at Southern Miss' M.M. Roberts Stadium in Hattiesburg is just an exhibition, the Mississippi players are taking it seriously.
"Very big to play for the state of Mississippi," said Seminary defensive lineman Qvaius Currie. "It's huge."
"Yeah, I'm gonna treat it like a real game," said Greenwood offensive lineman Kwatrivous Johnson.
Alabama has owned the series, holding a 22-8 all-time advantage. However, the only other time this contest was played in the Magnolia State – 2015 - the Mississippi All-Stars came away with a 28-21 win.
It is a friendly rivalry between the neighboring states, a privilege for the head coaches chosen, and a chance for both Mississippi and Alabama to showcase their talent to the rest of the football world.
"I don't know if we're coaching them, we're just kind of getting them lined up," said Mississippi head coach Lance Mancuso, coach of class 3A state champion Jefferson Davis. "They've had great coaching all their careers. It's just really exciting to be on the field and be a part of not only the great players but the great coaching staff, and everything that goes into being a part of this football game. It's just an awesome experience and one that I'm extremely thrilled to be a part of."
"The talent in Alabama and Mississippi is just off the charts," said Alabama head coach Steve Smith, head coach of Piedmont High School. "I told our kids I believe we don't get the hype maybe that the Florida's and Georgia's and Texas and California's. But as far as per capita, I think the best football in the United States of America is in Alabama and Mississippi."