Maybe Jones was penalized because he lives in a small town - Harrodsburg - rather than the big city.
Maybe Jones was penalized because he was from a small school - Harrodsburg for three years and then Mercer his senior year - rather than a traditional track power like St. Xavier.
But whatever the reason, it was wrong. Way wrong.
Jones was the state's outstanding male track performer all season. He had enormous pressure on him all season, but handled it with class and record-setting performances week after week.
Other competitors were in awe of him. Rival coaches stopped to watch him jump - and applaud his feats. He simply dominated his event like no one else in the state did.
Jones set the new state overall record without even making his best jumps of the season. He was actually disappointed that he barely went over 50 feet in the triple jump at the state meet because in his mind, he wanted to go at least 51 or 52 feet.
We've never had an Olympian from this area. Jones could be the first.
Sure, it's a longshot, especially with him going to Centre College instead of a stronger track program that might offer him better preparations for international competition.
However, Jones was ranked among the elite high school jumpers in the country this season and will compete in several high quality meets in the next few weeks, including one in Puerto Rico.
Jones deserved to be recognized as the state's top trackster based on what he did this season. However, even without the Gatorade award, he still put his name into the state record book and did something no other Kentucky high school athlete had ever done by triple jumping 50 feet - and not winning the award doesn't change that.