Crittenden County senior football player Dyllan Thornton, 17, (pictured at right) received a standing ovation following his inspirational speech Sunday evening at the Mexico Baptist Church's Football Fellowship Night.
About 200 people attended the faith-based football pep rally, including football players from kindergarten to 12th grade and their families and friends.
David Cozart, a former Crittenden County and Campbellsville University football player, was also a featured speaker. Cozart is an associated minister at First Baptist Church Bracktown in Lexington. His is a 1989 graduate of CCHS.
Thornton's message was about what it takes to be a Christian student-athlete and to succeed on and off the field.
Cozart spoke about "going a step farther," weaving scripture and Jesus's sacrifice into stories about sports and personal achievement.
A meal was served at the start of the event and dozens of door prizes were awarded at the end. Every youngster who attended received a small blue football.