Trojan Tour: Trojan fans mingle and meet Troy University head coaches during the Trojan Tour Kickoff
Published 3:00 am Wednesday, June 1, 2016
Trojan fans were able to meet and mingle with their favorite coaches and administrators Tuesday as Troy University and Guardian Credit Union kicked off Trojan Tour 2016 at Veterans Memorial Stadium.
With the 2015-2016 year now complete, fans were able to take a pulse of the Trojan athletic programs as they look ahead to the start of the 2016-2017 seasons.
“This kind of puts the finishing touches on this past year and kick starts this coming year,” said Troy Athletic Director Jeremy McClain. “We are 94 days from the beginning of football. This is a good opportunity. Our coaches don’t normally have the opportunity to do this during the year. Getting them out in front of everyone to visit is a lot of fun.”
The tour that runs through June 16 and includes visits across the state and in north Florida.
“For me it’s kind of the wake up call that football season is almost here,” said Troy football coach Neal Brown. “It’s upon us. We are less than 100 days away from our first football game.”
Along with McClain and Brown, other coaches that were in attendance were men’s basketball coach Phil Cunningham, women’s basketball coach Chanda Rigby and baseball coach Mark Smartt.
Fans were treated with dinner from Chic-fil-A, followed up by statements from each head coach as well as McClain and the emcee of the event Barry McKnight.
The event gave fans such as Dwayne and Mandy Norman the opportunity to see familiar faces and get an up close look at the status of their favorite teams.
“It’s a cool community event,” Dwayne Norman said. “We get to see a lot of people that we see at the various sporting events. It’s pretty neat to all come together. We are at the beginning of the summer, and it’s pretty cool to be able to hang out, fellowship and to see what is going to hopefully this fall.”
“I think it’s fun because it creates excitement,” Mandy Norman said. “We have access to these people and it makes you feel part of it.”
Two topics touched on by McClain were the end zone project and the possibility of adding a conference championship at the tail end of the football season.
“One of things we are talking about is whether to host a conference championship,” McClain said to the audience. “That is something that we are talking seriously about right now. There is a lot of discussion within our league about what the best thing to do is.”
Currently the Big 12 and the Sun Belt Conferences are the only ones not to host a conference championship game.
The end zone project has been a topic of conversation at Troy for many years and although an exact ground breaking date as yet to be announced, McClain believes it’s getting closer.
“If their were 10 steps or checks to make I would say we are on number eight right now,” McClain said. “We are really close to the finish line when it comes to having an official ground breaking … step number nine would be getting out to bid and getting it back and number 10 would be making sure that it’s within budget and all the numbers work.”
The next stop on the Trojan Tour will be on June 7 at Vulcan Park and Museum in Birmingham at 5:30 p.m.