CHICAGO (June 21, 2018) — In its 33rd year of honoring the nation’s best high school athletes, The Gatorade Company, today announcedCameron Murray of Westlake High School as its 2017-18 Gatorade Georgia Boys Track & Field Athlete of the Year. Murray is the first Gatorade Georgia Boys Track & Field Athlete of the Year to be chosen from Westlake High School.
The award, which recognizes not only outstanding athletic excellence, but also high standards of academic achievement and exemplary character demonstrated on and off the track, distinguishes Murray as Georgia’s best high school boys track & field athlete. Now a finalist for the prestigious Gatorade National Boys Track & Field Athlete of the Year award to be announced in June, Murray joins an elite alumni association of state track & field award-winners, including Lolo Jones (1997-98, Roosevelt High School, Iowa), Allyson Felix (2002-03, Los Angeles Baptist High School, Calif.), Robert Griffin III (2006-07, Copperas Cove High School, Texas), Grant Fisher (2013-14 & 2014-15, Grand Blanc High School, Mich.) and Candace Hill (2014-15, Rockdale County High School, Ga.).
The 5-foot-10, 150-pound senior won individual state titles in the long jump as well as the 110- and 300-meter hurdles at the Class 7A state meet this past season, leading the Lions to the team title. Murray also ran the lead leg for the 4x100-meter relay quartet that took third. His bronze medal finish in the 110-meter hurdles at June’s USATF Junior National Championships ranked as the nation’s No. 3 wind-legal time among prep competitors in 2018 as he crossed the line in 13.63 seconds. Murray also PR’d in the 300 hurdles this season (37.63, No. 58 nationally this spring) and the long jump (24-5, U.S. No. 10).
A member of the Anna Green Youth Usher Board and the EDGE Ministry Youth Department, Murray has donated his time to a youth Sunday School class. He has also mentored church youth. “His victory in the 110-meter hurdles at the Arcadia Invitational in April allowed the rest of the country to witness how talented Murray is, and he rode that momentum to an outstanding performance at the Georgia 7A state final,” said Erik Boal, editor for Dyestat.com. “One of the most explosive athletes in the country, whether he was clearing hurdles or racing down the runway, Murray was regularly at his best when it mattered most.”
Murray has maintained an 87.6 average in the classroom and has signed a national letter of intent to compete on an athletic scholarship at the University of Tennessee beginning this fall.
The Gatorade Player of the Year program annually recognizes one winner in the District of Columbia and each of the 50 states that sanction high school football, girls volleyball, boys and girls cross country, boys and girls basketball, boys and girls soccer, baseball, softball, and boys and girls track & field, and awards one National Player of the Year in each sport. The selection process is administered by the Gatorade Player of the Year Selection Committee, which work with top sport-specific experts and a media advisory board of accomplished, veteran prep sports journalists to determine the state winners in each sport.
Murray joins recent Gatorade Georgia Boys Track & Field Athletes of the Year Elija Godwin (2016-17, Newton High School), Isaiah Rogers (2015-16, Banneker High School), Ryan Clark (2014-15, Banneker High School), Kenny Selmon (2013-14, Pace Academy), Henry Dwyer (2012-13, Athens Academy), Jonathan Jones (2011-12, Carrollton High School), O'Neal Wanliss (2010–11, Holy Innocents Episcopal School), David Smith (2009-10, Lovejoy), Ken Gilstrap (2008–09, Miller Grove), Christian Taylor (2007-08, Sandy Creek), and Ben Hubers (2006-07, McEachern) among the state’s list of former award winners.
As a Gatorade Player of the Year, Murray will be able to select a national or local youth sports organization to receive a grant as part of the Gatorade Play It Forward program. Every Gatorade Player of the Year state winner receives a $1,000 grant to donate and will have the opportunity to enter for an additional $10,000 spotlight grant by writing a brief essay explaining why their selected organization deserves additional support. 12 spotlight grants – one for each sport – will be announced throughout the year.
To keep up to date on the latest happenings, become a fan of Gatorade Player of the Year on Facebook and follow us on Twitter. For more on the Gatorade Player of the Year program, including nomination information, a complete list of past winners and the announcement of the Gatorade National Player of the Year, visit www.gatorade.com/poy.