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SATURDAY, DECEMBER 23, 2006
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Simpson invited to Senior Bowl

From staff, wire reports

Alabama linebacker Juwan Simpson and running backs Le'Ron McClain and Kenneth Darby have accepted invitations to play in the Senior Bowl, bowl officials said Friday.

Simpson, an Austin high school graduate, is second on the team with 73 tackles, only one behind leader Jeffrey Dukes.

The 2006 season has been a tough go-around for the 6-foot-3, 226-pound Simpson. In May, Simpson was charged with possession of marijuana and carrying a handgun without a license. He was suspended for Alabama's Sept. 16 game against Louisiana-Monroe.

Simpson is the first area player to be invited to the Senior Bowl since Lawrence County High product David Stewart played in the 2005 contest.

The game is scheduled for Jan. 27 at Ladd-Peebles Stadium in Mobile.

McClain is considered one of the better fullbacks available in the 2007 NFL draft. He caught 19 passes for 166 yards and three touchdowns for the Crimson Tide, including the game-winning 2-yarder in overtime against Mississippi. He also had 10 carries for 53 yards.

Darby came into the season with hopes of breaking Shaun Alexander's Alabama rushing record but will most likely fail to do so. Darby needed 1,077 yards at the start of the season, but currently sits at 820 total.

The Senior Bowl is a postseason football game which allows college seniors to work out in front of NFL scouts three months before the pro draft.

Copyright 2005 THE DECATUR DAILY. All rights reserved.
AP contributed to this report.

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