DALLAS (FWAA) – Miami's D'Eriq King
is this week's nominee for the 2020 Capital One Orange Bowl
Courage Award. King, a redshirt senior quarterback, lost
his father this past winter to a heart attack and saw his mother
undergo treatments for breast cancer throughout the last year.
"I could always count you to hold me down!" King wrote in a Twitter
post when his father died. "The way you loved your family and your
will to do anything for us was second to none. The way you loved
my mom showed me what pure love was."
King had tallied 6,346 yards of total offense and 78 total touchdowns
from 2016-19 while at Houston. He transferred to Miami after the
2019 season, in need of a fresh start. But this past year has presented
no shortage of challenging moments off the field.
In November 2019, King's mother, Cassandra, was diagnosed with
breast cancer. On Feb. 15, just before the Hurricanes were set to
start spring practice, King's father, Eric, died of a heart attack
at the age of 48. He had been a youth coach in the Houston area,
and his loss was devastating to his family and community.
The COVID-19 pandemic had sent players home from Miami in mid-March,
which served as a blessing in disguise for King, as he got to spend
more time with his grieving family. His mother was declared cancer-free
on July 20. Two months later, King took the field with the Hurricanes
for the first time.
The 5-foot-11, 202-pound King has helped lift Miami to a 6-1
record and a No. 9 ranking in the AP poll. The team captain has
completed better than 63 percent of his passes for 1,831 yards with
16 touchdowns and four interceptions. He has added 406 rushing yards
and two more scores on the ground.
On Friday at NC State, King led a fourth-quarter comeback and
finished with 536 yards of total offense and five passing touchdowns.
He earned multiple national player of the week honors for his efforts,
and he became the first player to throw for 400 yards and five touchdowns
while also rushing for 100 yards in the same game since 2018. The
person who last accomplished that feat? Also King, while at Houston.
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 Arkansas State coach Blake Anderson (2019), SUNY Cortland
linebacker Kyle Richard (2018), Wisconsin safety D'Cota Dixon (2017),
Pitt 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 380-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 Capital One Orange Bowl
on Jan. 2, 2021. The Orange Bowl also led a community-wide effort
to bring the 2021 College Football Playoff National Championship
to South Florida. It will be played on Jan. 11, 2021 (2021miami.com).
For more information on the 2020-2021 Orange Bowl events, including
promotional and volunteer opportunities through the Ambassador Program
presented by Panera Bread, log on to
or follow @OrangeBowl on social media.
Founded in 1941, the Football Writers Association of America consists of 1,300 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
2020 Capital One Orange Bowl Courage Award Nominees
Oct. 28: Jon Dietzen, Wisconsin
Nov. 4: Alex Charlton, Midwestern State/Arkansas State
Nov. 11: D'Eriq King, Miami
Nov. 18: Kentucky Wildcats
Nov. 25: Chase Allen, Iowa State
Dec. 2: Sarah Fuller, Vanderbilt
One Orange Bowl Courage Award