DALLAS (FWAA) – Notre Dame's Nic Weishar is this week's nominee for the 2018 Capital One Orange Bowl-FWAA Courage Award. Weishar, a fifth-year tight end who lost his brother Andrew in 2012 to cancer, helped launch a foundation to bring joy and ease the financial burden felt by families battling cancer.
"I think just the most rewarding part is obviously to see a smile on a family's face that's going through such a hard time, and just to know that you're doing something that really means a lot to them," Weishar said. "Just the little things that people did for us when Andrew was going through his battle, we were just so fortunate to have so many family friends around, and there are people that don't have that support system. And to kind of be able to be that for somebody, for a young kid that's going through that, just to shoot him a text when he's at treatment, just to let him know you're thinking about him really means a lot to that kid."
Andrew Weishar died on Oct. 12, 2012, at the age of 21. He had waged a nearly three-year battle with colorectal cancer, but even in his toughest moments, he had asked his family to pay forward all of the kind deeds others had done for him when he was sick. The family launched The Andrew Weishar Foundation in the south suburbs of Chicago, and the charity has granted more than $800,000 to families battling cancer.
Nic Weishar was recently named to the Allstate AFCA Good Works Team. On Saturday, he hauled in the third touchdown catch of his career, a two-yard grab that proved to be the deciding score in a 22-17 win over Vanderbilt to help the Irish improve to 3-0. Weishar has 17 career catches for 122 yards.
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 Capital One Orange Bowl-FWAA Courage Award are Wisconsin safety D'Cota Dixon (2017) Pittsburgh running back James Conner (2016), Miami offensive lineman Hunter Knighton (2015), Duke offensive lineman Laken Tomlinson (2014), San Jose 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 Jose State's Neil Parry (2003) and Toledo's William Bratton (2002).
About the Orange Bowl
The Orange Bowl is a 360-member, primarily-volunteer non-profit sports organization that promotes and serves the South Florida community. With its primary mission since being created in 1935 to bring tourism to South Florida through an annual football game and events, it has also maintained a legacy of charitable contributions and community outreach. Orange Bowl community outreach efforts are comprised of four pillars: youth sports, fundraising and community events, academic programs and scholarships, and legacy gifts. 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 29, 2018. For more information on the 2018-19 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.
Founded in 1941, 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
2018 Orange Bowl Courage Award Nominees
Sept. 12: John Schlarman, Kentucky |
· Sept. 19: Nic Weishar, Notre Dame
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· Sept. 26: Rex Culpepper, Syracuse |
· Oct. 3: Caleb Farley, Virginia
Tech | High-resolution
· Oct. 10: Antwan Dixon, Kent State
· Oct. 17: Marquez Stevenson, Houston
· Oct. 24: Janarius Robinson, Florida
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· Oct. 31: Tre Brown, Oklahoma
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· Nov. 8: Matt Stauder, Indiana
Nov. 14: Kyle Richard, Cortland
Nov. 21: Isaiah Woods, Portland State
One Orange Bowl Courage Award