• JOSH MCGARITY

Two seniors who were big reasons for Covington’s football success the last three seasons have made commitments to play at the next level.

Free safety Josh McGarity earned a scholarship from Bethany College, a Division III school in Lindsborg, Kans. Offensive lineman Eli Patrick accepted as an offer as a preferred walk-on at UT-Martin.

McGarity played primarily wide receiver during his sophomore season before moving to free safety the last two years, though he did catch three passes in last year’s state semifinal game vs. Pearl-Cohn.

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“He did really well for us on on defense, getting everybody lined up and making the right calls,” said Covington coach J.R. Kirby. “He grew up a lot last year.”

Bethany assistant Cody Peabody reached out to McGarity about two weeks ago and McGarity made his commitment via Twitter on Sunday.

“My coaches and teammates, they pretty much got me where I wanted to go,” McGarity said. “They pushed me to where I wanted to be some day. There were some times when I didn’t feel like I wanted to do it, but my coaches and teammates were there to pick me up.”

Bethany College is 630 miles away from Covington and McGarity has never visited the school. Nevertheless, he’s looking forward to making his mark in unfamiliar territory.

“I’m just trying to better myself and learn how to be on my on,” he said. “Eventually I’m going to have to be on my own some day.”

Patrick was a three-year starter at tackle and earned numerous postseason awards. At 5-11, 240, he projects as a center at D-I UT-Martin.

“He’s an extremely hard-working kid who is very accountable,” Kirby said. “At the end of the day he wants to play college football … He knows he’s undersized and he knows what he’s getting into. He’ll be playing with the big boys.”

Kirby said there should be five Covington graduates playing college football next fall.

Benton Glass signed with Henderson State University in 2018 and Ethan McDivitt signed with Bethel University last spring. Myles Stark, a senior this year, inked a scholarship with Bethel last February.