Special to the News-Times
COLDSPRING — Family and friends, coaches, students, and administrators were on hand as seniors Chrishun McGowen and Jaylon Bradford signed their letters of intent to attend Tyler Junior College and Cisco College, respectively.
Coldspring-Oakhurst High School celebrated two outstanding athletes on National Signing Day, Feb. 1, as they committed to play college football.
Athletic Director/Head Football Coach Ken Stanley said it was the first time since his tenure (nearly five years) that two COHS athletes had signed their letters of intent on the actual date of National Signing Day.
He described the work ethic of both athletes in an address to the crowd before the signing.
“Crishun came in as a freshman with great potential but suffered an injury that required major surgery,” Stanley said. “When he was able to return to school, even though he wasn’t released medically yet, he showed up at every practice and stood on the sidelines fully dressed out with his helmet on. He never missed.”
Stanley said that once Chrishun was released, he played one game on JV and we realized he was something special, so he was pulled up to varsity and he played every game on the way to the Trojans’ playoff game against East Chambers.
When COVID hit, Chrishun wasn’t able to attend school in person his sophomore year due to safety concerns, but he started working out after Christmas and played his junior year with outstanding potential.
Stanley said he was being scouted by Division 1 schools including El Paso University and SFA, but he injured his knee again at the end of his junior year and wasn’t able to work out his lower body for a long time.
“He still had a great year this year, but it wasn’t indicative of what he can really do,” Stanley said. “Still, Tyler JuCo is a major Division 1, so hopefully he will do well there and transfer to one of the 4-year division universities.”
Stanley said that Jaylon Bradford was an average player in his first year, but hard work gave him strength.
“He started doing competitions in the off-season and started winning contests most players aren’t able to win,” Stanley said. “He started this year as an inside linebacker on defense and ended up being named all-district linebacker. He had a lot of great highlights film and ended up with this great opportunity at Cisco College, a really good school.”
Both athletes will be attending college on full football scholarships.
“These are two fine young men who have overcome a lot of obstacles, worked hard and now they will be rewarded by having their educations paid for through football,” Stanley said. “They deserve to be congratulated.”