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Tartan High School Coaches Jon Wessel and Randy Taylor To Receive Minnesota Football Honors Courage Award

By Daniel House, 04/12/24, 8:45AM CDT



MINNEAPOLIS, Minn. – April 12, 2024  –  The Minnesota Chapter of the National Football Foundation is proud to present Tartan High School coaches Jon Wessel and Randy Taylor with this year’s Minnesota Football Honors Courage Award. Wessel and Taylor will be honored during this summer’s Minnesota Football Honors broadcast. 

Last February, Tartan assistant football coach Randy Taylor went into kidney failure. Taylor, who had an O-negative blood type, was suddenly searching for a life-saving match. News of Randy’s diagnosis prompted the entire Tartan football coaching staff to get tested. Not long after doing so, the results came in - Tartan assistant coach Jon Wessel was a match. Wessel immediately knew he wanted to donate his kidney to Taylor. The transplant, which took place on Jan. 15 at Abbott Northwestern, bonded the two coaches for life. Now, after undergoing the successful transplant, Taylor and Wessel are back doing what they love - coaching, inspiring and developing student-athletes. Taylor and Wessel’s lesson of selfless courage and friendship set an inspiring example for the entire Minnesota football community. 

“Jon and Randy’s story illustrates the power we have to make a difference in the lives of others. Jon’s selfless act of courage provided Randy with a life-changing gift,” said Todd Fultz, President of the Minnesota Chapter of the National Football Foundation and 2011 Courage Award winner. “We can’t wait to spotlight this great story of courage, generosity and friendship during our Minnesota Football Honors broadcast.”

Minnesota Football Honors is hosting a television show to honor this year’s high school, college and Minnesota Vikings award winners. An official broadcast date will be announced at a later date on To view a statewide map of past and present Minnesota Football Honors Award Winners, visit this site. 

Previous Minnesota Football Honors Courage Award winners:

2008: Tyler Jenson: Brainerd High School 

2009: Ryan Goetzinger: Caledonia High School 

2011: Todd Fultz: St. John’s and Minnesota Chapter of the National Football Foundation President

2012: Derek Klinkner: Southwest Minnesota State

2013: Connor Cosgrove: University of Minnesota

2014: Peter Westerhaus: University of Minnesota

2015: Josh Benson: Hinckley-Finlayson

2016: Casey O’Brien: Cretin Derham-Hall

2017: Mike Sherels: University of Minnesota

2018: Danny Lilya: Moose Lake High School 

2019: Ryan Barlett: White Bear Lake High School 

2021: Cap George and Family: Rosemount High School

2022: Trevor Solem: Minnewaska High School 

2023: Ethan Glynn: Bloomington Jefferson


About the Minnesota Chapter of the National Football Foundation:

The Minnesota Chapter of The National Football Foundation and College Hall of Fame is a local non-profit organization whose mission is to promote amateur football’s ability to develop leadership, sportsmanship, competitive spirit and academic excellence in Minnesota’s young people. The Minnesota Chapter recognizes legendary football icons, college football Hall of Famers and Minnesota’s top high school and college football scholar-athletes. For more information, visit, or Facebook (@MNFootballHonors) and Twitter (@NFFMN).


Todd Fultz, President - Minnesota Chapter of the National Football Foundation

Phone: (612)-325-5500

Media Contact:

Daniel House, Director of Media Relations and Content

Minnesota Chapter of The National Football Foundation