Idalou legend receives leadership award

Idalou athletics director and head football coach Johnny Taylor received the first annual "Red Apple Award" from the Boy Scouts of America Tuesday. The award recognizes a coach or mentor who leads youth in a positive manner in the community.

Taylor announced in January he would be stepping down from both positions at Idalou by the end of the summer.

"It's a great way to end my career with this award," said the 2A State Champion coach. "Hopefully it means at least I've done a few things right."

Taylor did plenty right on the field in his 22 year career in Idalou, leading the Wildcats to 11 straight postseason and a state championship this past year. However, Idalou's head man spent most of his acceptance speech(and after) thanking the people around him.

"I couldn't have asked for better people to work with than I've had in Idalou. It's been a great place."

Other coaches in the area have noticed Taylor's work as well.

"You talk about a great example of a coach and someone you'd want your kids to play for," said Monterey head coach Todd Pearson. "It's a shame he's retiring beecause he's got a lot more to give."

Taylor leaves Idalou with a career record of 189-65-3. As for his off-the-field leadership, most would agree he's leaving even bigger shoes to fill.

"You just can't say enough about what he's accomplished there in Idalou, but above and beyond the things he's done [on the field] as far as teaching young people...but also, how to be a great young man," said Estacado head coach Danny Servance. "That probably speaks more than his coach does."