Austin Rossi, center, signs with Birmingham-Southern College to play football. Also pictured are (front row) Rossi’s father, Chris Rossi; mother, Michelle Wade; nephew, Cole Courtney; and (back row) coach Donnie Hand, sister Dawn Rossi and coach Cain Young.
Austin Rossi, center, signs with Birmingham-Southern College to play football. Also pictured are (front row) Rossi’s father, Chris Rossi; mother, Michelle Wade; nephew, Cole Courtney; and (back row) coach Donnie Hand, sister Dawn Rossi and coach Cain Young.

Archived Story

CCHS football player signs with Birmingham-Southern

Published 4:02pm Tuesday, March 12, 2013

There was little doubt that Chilton County High’s Austin Rossi would play football on the collegiate level, the only question was where he would end up.

Rossi, the 2012 Clanton Advertiser Player of the Year, ended all talk about where he would continue his career by signing a letter of intent with Birmingham-Southern College on Tuesday.

“It’s a great school,” he said. “They have everything I want.”

Rossi was one of the key pieces in the Tigers’ strong season, as they went 10-2 and won a playoff game for the first time since 1996. His presence on both sides of the ball (linebacker on defense, tight end on offense) is what makes him a prized possession, said CCHS coach Donnie Hand.

“He did a great job for us,” he said. “He’s a hard worker. He led us on defense, and was a go to player on offense.”

Rossi was all over the place in a good way for the Tigers all season. His 147 tackles, two sacks, 330 receiving yards and five touchdowns are impressive enough on their own, but even more so considering he played the last half of the season with a broken arm.

He also blocked a crucial kick late in the playoff game against Saraland, as well as pulled in the winning touchdown pass.

Hand also said he felt Rossi could make an impact on the next level in similar fashion to his time at CCHS.

“Birmingham-Southern’s getting a steal,” he said. “I believe he’ll do great. [He can] definitely contribute on special teams his first year.”

Now that he knows where he’s headed, Rossi can focus on settling into a position on the team, which has yet to be determined.

“They haven’t decided if they want me [to play] linebacker or H-back,” he said. “They told me they don’t care where I play, just as long as I play for them.”

Rossi said he’ll miss his time at Chilton County, but was looking forward not only to football, but studying anesthesiology at BSC.

“It’s been a great time,” he said. “The best years of my life. All of my coaches have been a big help to me.”

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