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Russellville’s Cole Barnett signs for baseball with Wallace State Lions

Russellville High School baseball second baseman and 2021 Class 5A state championship finals MVP Cole Barnett made his future plans known at a scholarship signing ceremony May 26.

Barnett, a senior leader on this year’s RHS state championship winning team, will be suiting up for the Wallace State Community College Lions next season in Hanceville for head coach Randy Putman.

“I told him about Cole,” Russellville head coach Chris Heaps said about a conversation he had with Putman after the state championship series win – a series in which Barnett went 5-for-5 at the plate in his last at-bats to finish up his high school career. “I said Cole was a very, very, very bad man on the field in Montgomery, and he did so many things well.”

Barnett made the smooth transition this season from shortstop to second base without missing a beat. “When I think about guys that are very well-rounded, and I think back to when my boys were little and I tried to explain to them what a renaissance man was – I think of Cole in that area,” Heaps shared.

The new signee, the son of Michael and Brandi Barnett, said he was excited and appreciative during his big day.

“I’m just blessed and thankful I had a bunch of people come out to celebrate, and I can’t thank them enough for coming out here,” Barnett said. “I can’t thank Coach Putman enough for giving me the opportunity, and I can’t thank the Lord above enough for being good to me all of my life.”

One of the things that stood out to Barnett during his visit to Wallace State was the evidence of the importance of hard work.

“I love Coach Putman already, and he’s a very good man,” Barnett said. “He’s very respected in many people’s eyes for the stuff he’s done in the past, and I’m hoping to carry on that tradition and keep the fire going there at Wallace.”

Barnett also gave credit to Heaps and the entire baseball coaching staff at RHS for helping him get where he is today, calling them, “the best coaching staff in the state of Alabama.”

The support of the Russellville community in the stands has also been important to Barnett, on both the baseball and football fields, where he was a standout player in each sport.

“We are blessed. We are so blessed to get to grow up in this community,” he added.