Clemmons enjoys Murray football
To the victor goes to spoils, and the spoils for the two-time 4A semifinalist Tigers have been two players from the 2015 team sign with college football squads and four members of the current squad with Division I offers.
Steven Clemmons, the anchor of the record setting offensive line in 2015, recently finished up his freshman season with the Murray State Racers of the Ohio Valley Conference.
"I am very happy at Murray State," Clemmons, an electro-mechanical engineering major, said. "I'm happy to be part of the group that gets to change the culture here at Murray. Things are changing for the better around here. Coach (Mitch) Stewart is an amazing coach. He cares deeply about this team and he is turning it around and going in the right direction."
Clemmons lettered all four years at Marshall County and led the Tigers to the playoffs all four years while earning 2015 Region 4-4A lineman of the year, 2015 All-Region, 2015 preseason All-State, and 2014 All-District.
The 6-4, 295 pound lineman was set to take a redshirt year in 2016, but unexpectedly had that status taken away when injuries hit the Racers and Clemmons was thrown into action in games against Austin Peay and Illinois from the Big 10 Conference.
"My biggest adjustment from high school to college would be the speed of the game," Clemmons stated. "How much faster it is. Also a big adjustment would be how much more talent there is where I'm playing on a level where everyone is talented. It has pushed me to become better and more successful in my career here at Murray."
Murray State was in a rebuilding mode in 2016, finishing with a 4-7 record overall, but the Racers went 4-4 in the OVC including a three-game win streak midseason against Eastern Illinois (EIU), Tennessee State, and Eastern Kentucky.
The Racers have a bright future for Clemmons to look forward to with close losses to Missouri State (28-22), Southeast Missouri State (17-16), and UT-Martin (38-31).
Murray State played the #1 ranked Football Championship Subdivision (FCS) team, Jacksonville State to a close 33-15 loss and despite the seven losses Clemmons has spent a memorable season in Paducah.
"I have been taking it day by day and enjoying those moments that come by," Clemmons offered. "The most memorable moment is a tough choice. It either can be when we were playing Austin Peay and I got in for a few plays and got my first pancake on the first play. Or when we beat the 15th ranked FCS team EIU."
And much like other former Tigers making the transition to the college ranks, Clemmons follows his alma mater closely and can offer worthwhile advice to the new crop of recruits gracing the field at Preston Hopkins.
"I have been definitely keeping up with the Tigers being 9-1 in the regular season and beating Page 51-0 to get district champs back to back," Clemmons, who traveled back to Lewisburg to watch the semifinal game against Knoxville Central, said. "I am very proud of my Tigers! And some advice-- "To be the best you can be. If you love it, you will never work in your life."
Clemmons and former Tigers Aaron Medley (Tennessee, junior), Kacy Pleas (Lindsey Wilson, freshman), and Jay Murphy (UT-Martin, senior) will be joined by current players Cain McWilliams (MTSU commit), Jay Howard (seven offers, most recent from Air Force), Tre Crutcher and J.Q. Haislip (both offers from Morehead State) next season.