Growing up an avid sports fan, Randy Harvey would always watch the annual Heisman Trophy presentation on television.
But besides just watching the nation’s best college football player receive his trophy, Harvey also enjoyed the portion of the program where a pair of high school athletes received the annual Wendy’s High School Heisman Award, presented to a male and female scholar athlete.
“I always thought that was pretty cool,” Harvey said. “I thought it would be neat to get to go to that.”
Harvey might get that chance. The 17-year old senior from Destrehan was named the male Louisiana winner for the annual scholarship program. Mallory Robichaux of Holy Savior Menard in Alexandria is the female state winner. Some time next week, 12 national finalists will be chosen, and, from that pool, the two national winners will get to attend the Heisman Trophy Award presentation on Dec. 12 in New York.
“It’s very humbling,” Harvey said. “Even if I don’t go forward, just to know I’m the winner from Louisiana is enough for me.”
A three-sport athlete at Destrehan, Harvey plays baseball, soccer and, this year for the first time, football. He said he started as a dual athlete in baseball and soccer, until the seasons began to conflict.
“After about sixth grade, they made me choose,” Harvey said. “The baseball team was going to Cooperstown for the tournament, and the soccer team was in the playoffs. But the Cooperstown trip was already paid for, so I chose baseball.”
Even though soccer was really his first love, Harvey gave it up for several years until, one day, his friends started talking about his skills to Destrehan’s soccer coaches.
“They were telling the coaches all about me, and the coaches said they would do whatever they could to make it work,” Harvey said. “So I joined the soccer team and ended up making first-team all-district.”
Then one day the football coaches went out to a soccer game.
“They saw that I had one of the strongest legs, and they needed a kicker,” Harvey said. “They asked me if I would try, so I did.”
And while still working to adapt his soccer technique to the football field, Harvey has been outstanding, making 90 percent of his extra points. At a recent football camp in Mississippi he was ranked the No. 1 kicker.
“He’s been a tremendous asset to us,” Destrehan football coach Stephen Robicheaux said. “We were scratching our heads wondering what we were going to do after all our kickers graduated. He came out, and he’s really self-taught. He does it all himself. And he really does it all. He is truly, truly the picture of the student-athlete.”
Harvey said when he spotted the Wendy’s High School Heisman application in his senior packet this fall, he was determined to fill it out. And he said he especially liked that it focused on more than just his athletic achievements.
Harvey has a 4.0 grade-point average in the Talented Art Program. He is also the president of the National Honor Society, the Beta Club president, on the Student Council, a member of the Fellowship of Christian Athletes and has participated in many academic competitions.
He also traveled to Mexico last summer as part of what he called a “life-changing” mission trip, visiting several orphanages there.
“A lot of people don’t know these things about me,” Harvey said. “I like that this focuses on the other things I do outside of sports; that I can draw and things like that. When I was writing it all down, I looked at it and it was, like, wow. I did all that. It’s humbling.”