Troy football reestablishes awards in honor of former Trojans

Published 1:08 pm Monday, September 12, 2022

Getting your Trinity Audio player ready...

On Monday, Troy Trojans football coach Jon Sumrall announced that the program was reestablishing weekly awards that were in honor of former Troy players.

Both the Nathan Harris Service Award and Corey McCullers Spirit Award were previously presented weekly at Troy when Sumrall was an assistant coach with the Trojans. The Service Award will also be in honor of another former Trojan, as well.

“The Service Award for our program was named for Nathan Harris, a young man that was a walk-on here and added a lot of value (to the team), but left this world way too early,” Sumrall said. “It was the Nathan Harris Service Award and now it’s going to be the Service Award in honor of Nathan Harris and John Johnson.”

Sign up for our daily email newsletter

Get the latest news sent to your inbox

Harris passed away in a motorcycle crash in 2016 and Johnson passed away in a motorcycle accident in 2019. McCullers also passed away in a car accident in 2015. Johnson is a Troy native and was a star receiver at Charles Henderson High School before becoming a starting receiver at Troy. He also has a connection to the Service Award previously.

“John played here and ironic enough he was the last recipient of the Nathan Harris Service Award in 2017,” Sumrall recalled.

John Johnson is a Troy native and former receiver at Troy and Charles Henderson. (Photo courtesy of Troy University Athletics)

This first recipient of the newly christened Nathan Harris/John Johnson Service Award is All-Sun Belt defender Javon Solomon.

“Javon did two community service things last week and one in the public school spending some time with kids that needed a little extra attention,” Sumrall said. “I’m really proud of what Javon does. He’s on our leadership council and that’s a well-earned recognition for him.”

Sumrall recalled the type of spirit that McCullers had as a player at Troy.

“Corey came to practice every day with a great attitude,” he said. “I remember Corey being on the scout team and us telling (the team) to reload a play and (Corey) looking back at us and saying, ‘Good, now we can run it better.’ I remember thinking that’s such a great perspective on life in general.”

This week’s Corey McCullers Spirit Award was presented to senior Tim Steward.

Corey McCullers was killed in an automobile accident in the summer of 2015.

“Tim tore his ACL in training camp (last year) and rehabbed and fought really hard to get back healthy,” Sumrall said of Steward. “He had really great sideline energy last week and such a great approach to practice each and every day the last couple of weeks.”

Sumrall said that both the Service and Spirit Awards would be presented weekly this year and a permanent Spirit Award and Service Award recipient will be announced at the end of the season.

Troy’s Offensive Player of the Game for the Alabama A&M win was receiver RaJae’ Johnson, while defensive tackle TJ Jackson was named Defensive Player of the Game and bandit Eric Shaw was the Special Teams Player of the Game. Also, receiver Markus Fells was named Scout Team Offenisve Player of the Week, defensive lineman Fabian Rogosch is Scout Team Defensive Player of the Week and running back Jarris Williams is Scout Team Special Teams Player of the Week.