By allowing ads to appear on this site, you support the local businesses who, in turn, support great journalism.
PREP FOOTBALL: Alcovy's Stroud inks NLI to Georgia Southern
Stroud Sign
MJ Stroud (center) was accompanied by his parents as he signed a scholarship to continue his football career at Georgia Southern University. - photo by Phillip B. Hubbard

COVINGTON, Ga. - Family members, coaches and teammates of MJ Stroud gathered in Alcovy’s auditorium on Wednesday, Dec. 15, as he signed a national letter of intent to play college football at Georgia Southern University next year. 

A few of the coaches in attendance, school administrators and Stroud’s mother all spoke about Stroud during Wednesday’s ceremony. Adjectives such as “humble” and “unselfish” were used to describe Stroud. 

While each person spoke, Stroud was focused on one thing: “Don’t cry.” 

Admittedly, Stroud said afterward that he was close to shedding a tear or two, but he expressed his happiness at putting pen to paper. 

“It’s a relief,” Stroud said. “Most people have to struggle and take out loans [to afford college], but the fact that my ability in sports was able to pay for my education, too, feels good.” 

Stroud is joining the Eagles football program as a defensive end but, during his time as a Tiger, he received substantial experience in other roles on the field. 

He’s been the team’s quarterback, wide receiver and tight end. According to head coach Jason Dukes, Stroud made an impact anywhere he played. 

“I can’t overstate what [Stroud] has done for this program,” Dukes said. “The dedication and commitment to the process, because this doesn’t just happen overnight.” 

The 6’3”, 230-pound, 3-star athlete (according to rankings by 247Sports), committed to the Eagles football program on Nov. 11, 2021 via Twitter. 

His decision came seven days after Clay Helton was announced as Eagles new head coach. 

But, for Stroud, his mind was made up long before the coaching change. 

“It’s a close community down there,” Stroud said. “When I visited, the new coaches already knew my name, so it made me even more definite with my decision. Everybody said they wanted me there.” 

As he prepares for the next level, Stroud isn’t quite ready to  leave Alcovy behind. There are people and relationships he’s built that are still special to him. 

From teammates he’s played with since elementary school, to family friends who’ve been a part of his journey from the beginning, Stroud said he’s motivated to give everyone close to him something to cheer for next fall in Statesboro.

Look for this article in a future print edition of The Covington News. Subscribe to the newspaper today for as little as $5 a month.