Casey Awards for the brightest Tri-parish gridiron standouts

Residents want sugarcane tractors to abandon route
November 9, 2010
Thursday, Nov. 11
November 11, 2010
Residents want sugarcane tractors to abandon route
November 9, 2010
Thursday, Nov. 11
November 11, 2010

The prep football season is officially over, so it’s now time for the moment you’ve all been waiting for.

No, no, no, dear friends, we’re not talking about the playoffs. Those are important, too, but I have something even better for you all today.

We’re talking about the Casey Awards – that slender golden trophy with your lovable sportswriter’s face plastered across it AKA what every high school athlete dreams of winning when they lace up their cleats (yes, that’s sarcasm).

The folks who won the first installment of the award this past spring tell me they are honored to have earned this esteemed award.

Basketball winners also continually tell me the trophy keeps the roaches away from their rooms – whatever that means.

Regardless of my ignorance about household pests, here are the awards for this wild and wacky football season.

Congratulations to all of the winners and as always, hold applause until the last award has been handed.

The Ronny “Crockett” Estay Award (Handed to the strongest, most athletic player)

Winner: Thibodaux offensive lineman Greg Robinson.

Let me first explain the story to everyone who doesn’t know who “Crockett” is. Ron Estay was a former South Lafourche and LSU football star that eventually became a Hall of Fame professional player. Local tales about the guy’s strength as a teenager run wild all across the area, to the point where he’s almost become a myth. Estay’s that one athlete every area has that was able to bench press four 18-wheelers while conducting open-heart surgery. Basically, the winner of this award is someone with Herculean strength, while still being athletic. The first thing anyone with functional eyes notices about Robinson when they see him is his massive size. The man just looks like a Louisiana black bear wearing a football jersey. It’s absolutely frightening. Despite his massive frame, Robinson’s probably Thibodaux’s best athlete – as scary as that is. There may never be another Hercules or another Crockett for that matter, but Big Greg is close.

The Wild, Wild West Award (Handed to the Tri-parish’s best gun-slinging quarterback)

Winner: Terrebonne quarterback Mike Williams.

We have plenty of solid quarterbacks in the area, but none were quite on Mike Williams’ level this year. The first strength Williams has is his God-given football frame, standing 6-foot-3-inches and weighing 210 pounds. But aside from that, this guy can flat chuck the ball around the field, carving up opposing defenses in a way that only a knife thrower at the local carnival could imagine.

The Work Horse Award (Handed to the Tri-parish’s most dependable ball carrier)

Winner: E.D. White fullback Dylan Ledet.

I won’t lie, this one was incredibly difficult because there are two phenomenal choices. But I’ll go with Ledet over Patterson halfback Kenny Hilliard in a decision that truly could go either way.

If one sees Ledet walking through the mall, people wouldn’t think he’s the football player that he is. But despite not necessarily looking the part, no one in the state is tougher than this kid, and no one is relied upon more heavily, either. As Ledet goes, so do the E.D. White Cardinals. That’s why he wins the award. But man, oh, man, it’s really close.

The Charlie Chaplin Award (Handed to the Tri-parish’s most silent, but dominant player)

I’ve seen a lot of good high school football players in my day. As a kid, I grew up watching Baltimore Ravens safety Ed Reed play for Destrehan and New York Giants halfback Brandon Jacobs play for Assumption.

In my teenage years, I was blessed to watch former LSU quarterback Ryan Perrilloux for East St. John and then current Tigers Jai Eugene and Jordan Jefferson rock ‘n’ roll for Destrehan. I honestly don’t know that I’ve ever seen a player quite as good as Johnson is – he’s truly that good. He runs in huge strides and just flies down the field.

When the ball is thrown his way, he’s catching it, too, whether he has to jump or dive for it. This kid doesn’t get the notoriety he deserves because he’s on a team that hasn’t won a game in two seasons, but Johnson would be the most highly recruited player in the state if he attended a more prestigious team.

Just like Chaplin, his play is doing all the talking, but people just can’t make out the words. There’s absolutely no reason that a big-time program should miss out on this kid. None whatsoever.

The Tri-parish’s Walking Brick Wall Award (Handed to the Tri-parish’s most dominant

defensive player)

Again, this one could go multiple places. There’s Justin Lasseigne at South Lafourche, there’s Devante Clark at Terrebonne and there’s Daren Kitchen at Vandebilt, among many others that I’m leaving out. I’ll go with Granier, even though he’s just a junior, and he has one full year to play. I was blessed enough to be able to watch this guy play two Fridays ago from the sidelines. The kid makes every single tackle. That’s hardly an exaggeration, either. He literally makes close to every tackle. He has vision of the field that is only seen at the professional level and it’s very easy to see why LSU among another national powers are fresh on this kid’s trail.

The Sean Payton Surprise Onside Kick Award (Handed to the Tri-parish’s Coach of the Year)

Winner: Laury Dupont, Vandebilt Catholic High.

Coach Dupont is one of a handful of coaches in this state to win 200 or more games in his illustrious coaching career. But he’s never done a better job than he’s done this year keeping the Terriers afloat following the terrible tragedy that struck the Vandebilt community earlier this season.

Someday 20 years from now, those young men will remember the strength of the Terriers’ staff led by Dupont, and they’ll realize that through tragedy they grew and became better, stronger people. Hats off to Coach Dupont, and if this were an actual awards banquet, he’d deserve a standing ovation from myself and all of our readers for a job extremely well done.

Finally, the big one – the one that everyone is here to see. It’s the award that will crown a new local legend … maybe.

The Most Valuable Player Award (Handed to the Tri-parish’s most valuable asset in the 2010 football season)

Winner: Everyone who supports prep football in the Tri-parish area.

OK, OK, I might have taken the easy way out here, but let me tell you a story.

I have seen high school football in plenty different areas of this state. And absolutely NOWHERE do the fans play a more active role on Friday nights than they do here.

Football isn’t football without a lively environment, good and committed coaches and athletic, physical players. Our area has all three, so I’d like to personally thank everyone for this season.

Whether you’re a waterboy, a bench warmer, a star quarterback, an assistant coach or just someone who sat on their butt for three hours every Friday night to support their local team, I thank you.

You are all making our youth better young men, and you are making my job a lot more fun. You all are what makes this happen – and it’s a great service to the community that you serve.