For the third time in as many seasons, Michigan State guard Tum Tum Nairn was honored with the Most Inspirational Player Award at the Spartans’ team banquet Monday.
But this year is different for the Bahamas native.
With the way Michigan State’s season has unfolded and the toll injuries have took on the Spartans, Nairn wanted the award to go to a trio of his teammates. During his speech, Nairn called upon Ben Carter, Gavin Schilling and Eron Harris — all seniors who suffered season-ending injuries this season — to take the honor, instead. Schilling and Carter missed the whole season, while Harris was hurt last month.
“Though it has my picture on it and my name on it, I want to turn this award over to these three guys,” Nairn said. “They’ve been a big inspiration to me to just keep going and always be thankful to God that I have the ability to play this season.”
“That’s one of the realest things. That’s not fake, that’s really real. That’s the type of person Tum is. That’s the kind of people we have on this team,” Harris said while accepting the award.
Nairn is averaging 3.8 points and 3.6 assists per game this season, and ranks 13th in the nation in assist-to-turnover ratio (3.11).