By Thomas Sellers Jr.
During mid-September, Millington Central High School Principal Mark Neal, Athletic Director Beth Hale and Trojan Football Head Coach Chris Michael welcome a pair of special guest.
Ray Rosas and Larry Dagen of the Trojan Twenty arrived on campus to make another special presentation. For nearly a decade the organization of MCHS alumni have given back to various causes related to Trojan Athletics.
This year in the midst of a global pandemic, the need for donations has grown. Several normal streams of revenue were taken away because of cancellations. The 2020 Trojan Twenty charitable cause was cleats for the Millington Football team.
“A little over nine years at our annual Golf Scramble I mentioned that I used the golf scramble to raise money to pay for all expenses,” Michael recalled, “so that the players had no cost and everything they needed was provided. Ray Rosas approached me afterwards and asked about my biggest need going into the season and how much it would cost.
“I told him cleats,” Coach continued. “Ray, being a big (Memphis) Tiger fan and a member of the Highland 100 came up with the idea to gather alumni and create the Trojan Twenty to give back to the program.”
Made up of former baseball, basketball, football and other varsity sports, the organization formed to pay tribute to Trojan sports past, impact MCHS athletics of today and have a positive impact on the Black and Gold for years to come.
IN 2019, the Trojan Twenty lost one of its members in Mike Younce and wanted to do something in remembrance of him for the baseball team. That year Trojan Baseball had improved dugouts featuring two banners with Younce’s name on them purchased by the Trojan Twenty.
Younce was a standout baseball player during his time at MCHS. He grew up playing in the Millington Summer League as an All-Star at shortstop and pitcher.
One of the best MCHS athletes of all time in Michael. A member of the MCHS Athletic Hall of Fame, Michael went on to the University of Memphis, then Memphis State and played on the Tiger Football team.
Michael came back to his alma mater dedicating time as a teacher and coach in track and football. For a decade he has led the Trojan Football team with winning multiple Region titles.
Rosas and the Trojan Twenty have supported Michael’s program with cheers and charity all that time.
“He (Rosas) asked what my bill was and I told him about $5,000 for cleats,” Michael recalled, “and that is where he set the bar for each member to donate $250×20. That equaled $5,000.
“This year because of the huge expense that football has with the annual budget they decided to circle back and donate to football,” he added. “Each year since the creation they have donated the money to different programs on campus that need equipment, uniforms, travel, etc… Since the COVID pandemic put us in a financial crisis they selected us again to be the recipient of the donation which worked out great just like 9 years ago when they were first created to help us buy cleats.”
Michael, Trojan Football and the MCHS administration wanted to express sincere gratitude to the Trojan Twenty for the timely and thoughtful donation.