• John Macon Gillespie

Hard Work Paying Off For Clopton

For Brookhaven's Trace Clopton, hard work is finally paying off.

The Panthers' 2018 offensive lineman has accumulated three Division I scholarship offers since Friday night, the night before he attended the Fortius Project at Jones County Junior College.

“God has blessed me far more than I ever could have asked for,” Clopton told SES Mississippi. “I'm just so thankful for all the blessings He has given me, and an amazing family to go through the process with me.”

Clopton now holds scholarship offers from South Alabama, Central Arkansas, UL-Lafayette and numerous junior colleges. Clopton received an offer from South Alabama on Friday night and the offers from Central Arkansas and UL-Lafayette on Monday.

Sandwiched in the middle of the excitement of scholarship offers was Clopton's participation in the Fortius Project.

“Fortius was a great experience I would recommend to any up-and-coming athletes,” Clopton said. “It's always good to get out there and compete with talented guys.”

Clopton saw some improvement in his stature and athletic ability begin last season, a year in which his Brookhaven Panthers went 8-4 and earned a trip to the postseason.

“I had a growth spurt last year like no other,” Clopton said. “I grew almost two inches and 40 pounds, so the size definitely helps. Have to keep working, though.”

Continuing to work is on the forefront of Clopton's mind heading into 2017.

“My goal for this year is to lead my team to a state championship,” Clopton said. “I'm going to work absolutely as hard as I can to make that happen.”

With the added attention from college programs, Clopton will also be working to make sure his individual skills do not fall by the wayside.

“I will also be working to become the best player I can be and continue to draw more attention from college programs,” Clopton said. “I'm just going to bring my best every day, and whatever happens is God's plan for me.”

#Brookhaven #JohnMaconGillespie

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