Toledo's Norrils Nominated for Orange Bowl-FWAA Courage Award
Toledo’s Cheatham Norrils is this week’s nominee for the 2015 Orange Bowl-FWAA Courage Award.
Norrils, a 6-foot, 195-pound cornerback from Toledo, Ohio, missed the entire 2014 season after contracting pneumonia and a viral infection in the summer.
“They never knew exactly what the viral infection was all about,” Norrils told the American Sports Network recently. “I had pneumonia for sure, but they did not know what the viral infection came from, what it was and that it just had to run its course. It was a bad situation and basically life or death.”
Norrils was hospitalized for 10 days and lost 25-30 pounds. Because he went through a stretch of five days without walking in the hospital, he developed blood clots, forcing him to take blood thinners on top of other medication. The redshirt senior was back at full strength by the time of fall camp this year, and he has played an integral part in the No. 22 Rockets’ 5-0 start, as Norrils leads the team in pass breakups (seven) and is fourth in tackles (28).
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 Orange Bowl-FWAA Courage Award are 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).
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