Jimmy Collins Special Awards, 2019
While there are many different categories of awards presented by the Greater New Orleans Sports Awards Committee, some years the committee finds that there are people or groups deserving of recognition who do not necessarily fit into one specific category. For that reason, the Committee presents the Jimmy Collins Special Awards to outstanding individuals and organizations. Collins was the president of a local Veterans of Foreign Wars post and a hard-working community contributor, who is credited with creating the Greater New Orleans Sports Awards and forming the awards committee in 1958.
This year the Committee chose to recognize two individuals for exhibiting excellence, but in widely different ways.
Conner Killian, a Metairie product and a graduate of Archbishop Rummel, serves as President of the Student-Athlete Advisory Committee at Louisiana Tech. Killian was the third-best finisher for the Bulldogs at the Conference USA Cross Country Championships; he also competed in the C-USA indoor championship, but suffered an injury during the outdoor season and was confined to a walking boot when a deadly tornado hit Ruston on April 25.
The tornado wreaked havoc on the Louisiana Tech campus and many residential areas, but despite his injury, Killian was a leader in the clean-up effort on the campus and in the community.
“Conner was one of the first students to arrive on the scene after the tornado,” said Louisiana Tech Director of Athletics Tommy McClelland. “He immediately began to remove debris as he organized a small team of other students (mostly student-athletes) to help clean up. Being a forestry major he had a chainsaw and started cutting limbs and removing trees from damaged areas. All of this started within hours of the tornado devastation and continued for many days. Not only has he helped on our campus, but he has gone out into our community into the residential areas and helped as well. He has done all of this while wearing a boot due to an injury sustained while competing as a member of our track and field team. When I think of what a servant looks like, I will now think of Conner.”
“I am truly honored to be receiving the Jimmy Collins Special Award,” Killian said. “Louisiana Tech University and Ruston are my home and I will always do everything I can to help the Ruston community, especially in the wake of a disaster.”
Meanwhile, in New Orleans, Joe Scheuermann was adding to his tremendous legacy on the baseball field. Delgado’s 10-4 win on April 9 marked the program’s 1,000th victory under Scheuermann. Now in his 29th season as the Dolphin’s head coach, Scheuermann became the 30th baseball coach in National Junior College Athletic Association (NJCAA) history to reach the milestone, joining nine active coaches. Scheuermann has a career mark of 1000-490 and he ranks ninth among active coaches in the all-time NJCAA wins category. In addition, in January, Scheuermann was announced as a member of the National Junior College Baseball Coaches Association Hall of Fame’s Class of 2019; he was inducted into the Hall in May in Grand Junction, Colo. He is the first college coach in Louisiana to reach the thousand-win mark at the same college and the first junior college baseball coach to be inducted into the Hall of Fame.
On learning of his selection to the Hall of Fame, Scheuermann said, “This is a tremendous honor that I share with my family, my coaches and players, and our entire Delgado family. This would have never been possible without the constant support that I have received on and off the field through the years. This is about WE, not just about ME. Thanks to everyone who had a part of my nomination and selection.”