Football Writers Association of America Oct. 28, 2015
For Immediate Release
Contact: Daniel Pyser
Receiver plays in honor of his sister
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DALLAS (FWAA) – Arizona State's D.J. Foster is this week's nominee for the 2015 Orange Bowl-FWAA Courage Award.


Foster, a 6-foot, 195-pound receiver from Scottsdale, Ariz., lost his 19-year-old sister, Jennifer, to an accidental drug overdose when D.J. was 15.

"She was one of those people that, when she'd walk in, she'd light up the room," Foster told in 2014. "People could see she had this aura."

Jennifer Foster, D.J.'s only sibling, was one of the biggest factors in D.J.'s decision to return to the Sun Devils for his senior year, as she told him as a young boy that there is more to life than just sports, and that it is important to finish what you started.

D.J. Foster is now on track to graduate this spring. He recently became the first player in 10 years to reach 2,000-plus career receiving and rushing yards, and just the fifth in NCAA history to accomplish the feat. A team captain, Foster has recorded a reception in 47 consecutive games, which is one game shy of tying the Pac-12 record.

D.J.'s locker features a photo of Jennifer that he takes with him to every away game. D.J. also has Jennifer's face tattooed above his heart with the words "Sweet Dreams." On the anniversary of Jennifer's death each year, D.J. and his father, Darryll, release balloons into the sky.

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 Josι 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 Josι 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 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, or to submit a nomination for this year’s Orange Bowl-FWAA Courage Award, contact Steve Richardson at

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

Related link:
• Capital One Orange Bowl Courage Award