DALLAS (FWAA) – Boston College's Bobby Swigert is the first weekly nominee for the 2015 Orange Bowl-FWAA Courage Award.
Swigert, a 6-0, 199-pound sixth-year senior wide receiver from Louisville, Ky., underwent 11 knee surgeries after severely injuring his right knee in a Nov. 2012 game against Notre Dame. The resulting surgery led to staph infections, which led to more surgeries and rehab. Swigert lost close to 50 pounds and had bone in his knee removed.
"The biggest thing is that football gives me a feeling that nothing else really does," Swigert told ESPN.com's Andrea Adelson this past March. "It's a thrill type thing when you're on the field and when you score a touchdown in front of screaming fans. It's something I've been striving to get back."
The Eagles hired Steve Addazio shortly after the injury, and the coach kept Swigert on scholarship all along. Swigert was cleared for practice this past spring, and he finally returned to game action for BC's Sept. 5 opener against Maine, catching the team's first touchdown of the season, an 11-yard reception just before halftime. Swigert caught two passes for 16 yards in the win.
The Courage Award was first presented by the Football Writers Association of America (FWAA) in 2002. A select group of writers from the FWAA vote on the winner each year. The requirements for nomination include displaying courage on or off the field, including overcoming an injury or physical handicap, preventing a disaster or living through hardship. The winner of the award will be included in festivities during Capital One Orange Bowl week and receive his trophy at an on-field presentation.
Previous winners of the award are Duke offensive lineman Laken Tomlinson (2014), San Jos State defensive lineman Anthony Larceval (2013), Clemson wide receiver Daniel Rodriguez (2012), Michigan State offensive lineman Arthur Ray Jr. (2011), Rutgers defensive tackle Eric LeGrand (2010), the University of Connecticut football team (2009), Tulsa's Wilson Holloway (2008), Navy's Zerbin Singleton (2007), Clemson's Ray Ray McElrathbey (2006), the Tulane football team (2005), Memphis' Haracio Colen (2004), San Jos· State's Neil Parry (2003) and Toledo's William Bratton (2002).
About the Orange Bowl
The Orange Bowl is a 363-member, primarily-volunteer non-profit sports organization that promotes and serves the South Florida community. The Orange Bowl features a year-round schedule of events culminating with the College Football Playoff Semifinal at the Capital One Orange Bowl on December 31, 2015. Other Orange Bowl core events include the MetroPCS Orange Bowl Basketball Classic, Orange Bowl Youth Football Alliance presented by Sports Authority, Orange Bowl International Tennis Championships, Orange Bowl International Youth Regatta, Orange Bowl Swim Classic and Orange Bowl Paddle Championships. For more information on the 2015-16 Orange Bowl events, including promotional and volunteer opportunities through the Ambassador Program presented by Panera Bread, log on to orangebowl.org. Follow Orange Bowl: @OrangeBowl, Facebook and Instagram.
Celebrating its 75th anniversary in 2015, the Football Writers Association of America consists of 1,400 men and women who cover college football. The membership includes journalists, broadcasters and publicists, as well as key executives in all the areas that involve the game. The FWAA works to govern areas that include game-day operations, major awards and its annual All-America team. For more information about the FWAA and its award programs, contact Steve Richardson at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Editor's note: To download a print-quality photo of Bobby Swigert, click on the photo within the release.
2015 Orange Bowl Courage Award Nominees
Sept. 16: Bobby Swigert, Boston College
Sept. 23: Jake Olson, USC
Sept. 30: Anthony Zettel, Penn State
Oct. 7: Leonard Fournette, LSU
Oct. 14: Cheatham Norrils, Toledo
Oct. 21: J.B. Grimes, Auburn
Oct. 28: D.J. Foster, Arizona State
Nov. 4: Demetrious Nicholson, Virginia
Nov. 11: Jerry Kill, Minnesota
Nov. 18: Mitchell Meyers, Iowa State
Nov. 25: Hunter Knighton, Miami
Dec. 2: Justin Hansen, Colorado State
Capital One Orange
Bowl Courage Award