Picayune’s Tyler Penton receives “Rocky” Byrd QB of the Year Award

Published 7:00 am Saturday, January 27, 2018

The Mississippi Gulf Coast Chapter of the National Football Foundation and Hall of Fame presented Picayune Maroon Tide quarterback Tyler Penton with the 2017 “Rocky” Byrd Quarterback of the Year Award Wednesday night.

During his senior year, Penton transitioned from being the team’s tight end to being the starting quarterback. This past season, he threw for 828 yards, rushed for 224 yards and scored a total of 11 touchdowns. Penton was also a two-year captain.

“I was honored to have received the award. Head Coach (Dodd) Lee told me about it earlier in the week, I was excited,” Penton said.

Sign up for our daily email newsletter

Get the latest news sent to your inbox

During the awards ceremony, Lee said coaches from across the Gulf Coast nominate and vote for an award winner based on statistics, team leadership and character.

Penton has played football for Picayune since the seventh grade and said playing for the Maroon Tide was an once-in-a-lifetime opportunity because nothing compares to it.

“Football has always been a huge part of my life and playing for Picayune was a great experience,” Penton said. “The coaches were great and having the opportunity to play with my friends was special.”

Lee said Penton is also a member of the National Honor Society, Beta Club, student council, Mu Alpha Theta and Fellowship of Christian Athletes.

He also recently received the Scholar Athlete Award from Picayune Memorial High School, due to his 4.0 GPA and score of a 28 on the ACT.

After high school, Penton plans to attend Ole Miss and major in bio-medical engineering. While at Ole Miss, Penton said he hopes to earn a walk-on spot on the football team.

Even though Penton will leave the city of Picayune in the near future, he said he will always support the Maroon Tide and plans to attend games so he can cheer for his little brother, Colin, and former teammates.

With his prep career coming to an end, Penton said the biggest life-lesson he received on the football field was how to be responsible. It’s a lesson he said he will take with him wherever he goes in life.

“He worked as hard as anybody in the weight room and on the field this past season. I thought he always led by example,” Lee said. “He has matured into a fine young man and that’s what we strive for more than anything else with all of our players.”

According to the Sun Herald, “Rocky” Byrd was a quarterback for Pascagoula High School between 1945-1947. Byrd led the team to an undefeated 12-0 record in 1947 and then went on to play for Head Coach Johnny Vaught at Ole Miss.