MOBILE, Ala. Under Armour Senior Bowl fans will have the chance to see two more University of Alabama stars All-SEC defensive back Simeon Castille and wide receiver D.J. Hall, the most prolific pass catcher in school history who will represent the Crimson Tide in the 2008 contest, bowl officials have announced.
The talented duo will join teammate Wallace Gilberry, the SEC’s leader in tackles for loss and the 2007 PetroSun Independence Bowl Defensive MVP who was previously announced as a Senior Bowl participant in December, on this year’s South team roster giving the Crimson Tide three players in this year’s game.
“It’s definitely an honor and a blessing to be included in the Senior Bowl, especially for me, growing up in Baldwin County,” Gilberry said. “It’s really where I started my career five years ago, at the High School All-Star game, so to be able to go back and finish off my collegiate career there is kind of like icing on the cake. It’s a treat to be selected and I am happy to be included.”
A 2007 Coaches first-team All-SEC selection, Castille led the Crimson Tide with ten pass break-ups on the season, to go along with 63 total tackles and two interceptions.
His best single game performances of the year came against Ole Miss, when he made seven tackles, one for loss, along with an interception and two pass break-ups, and against Auburn when he recorded a season-high nine tackles and a sack.
A 6-1, 193-pounder from Birmingham, he is the son of 1983 Senior Bowler and 2003 Senior Bowl Hall of Fame inductee Jeremiah Castille, a former Crimson Tide All-American defensive back.
His 12 career interceptions ranks eighth on the all-time Alabama list, as he led the Crimson Tide in interceptions as a junior in 2006 with six and finished fourth on the team last season with 71 total tackles.
“It’s really an honor for me to be selected to the Senior Bowl,” Castille said. “To have the opportunity to play with some of the best college players in the country will help me a lot, so I am looking forward to getting down there and having a good week.”
Hall finished his illustrious Alabama career as the holder of virtually every major game, season and career receiving record at the school, including all-time marks for career receptions with 194 and career receiving yardage with 2,923.
A 6-2, 195-pounder from Ft. Walton Beach, Fla., he led the team in catches (67), yards (1,005) and touchdowns receptions (six) during a stellar senior campaign.
A big, athletic receiver with outstanding speed and big play ability, he also set a school record in 2007 for receptions in a season with the 67, breaking the old mark held by Freddie Milons, with four receptions for 58 yards in Alabama’s 30-24 Independence Bowl victory over Colorado.
In 2006, he set another school record for receiving yards in a season with 1,056 on 62 catches, and established another school record with seven 100-yard receiving games.
He turned in his best game of the 2007 season in Alabama’s 41-17 victory over Tennessee, setting a school record with 13 catches for 185 yards and two touchdowns against the Vols, which earned him AT&T National Offensive Player of the Week honors.
Since the Senior Bowl’s inception in 1950, a total of 200 University of Alabama players have played in the contest, more than from any other school.
The Under Armour Senior Bowl is the nation’s most unique football game and football’s premier pre-draft event, annually featuring the country’s best senior NFL draft prospects on teams representing the North and South that are coached by the entire coaching staffs from two National Football League teams. The Senior Bowl is also attended by over 800 NFL coaches, scouts and other front office personnel each year.
Over 575 former Senior Bowl players are currently active in the NFL, and the 2007 NFL Pro Bowl rosters featured 25 former Senior Bowl players. A total of 90 players from the 2007 Under Armour Senior Bowl were selected in the 2007 NFL Draft, including 12 first-round picks.
The 59th annual Under Armour Senior Bowl will be played on January 26, 2008, at Ladd-Peebles Stadium in Mobile, Ala. Kickoff is at 3:00 p.m. (CST). The game and its week-long practice sessions will be televised live by the NFL Network.
For tickets and more information, access the bowl’s website at www.seniorbowl.com.