2017 Beyond The Trophy: Meet Penn State Chapter Co-President and QB Trace McSorley


TRACE MCSORLEY

Each week during the college football season we will feature a player who is an officer for an Uplifting Athletes Chapter for our Beyond the Trophy series.

 Name: Trace McSorley

College: Penn State University

Height, weight, class, position: 6-0, 195-pound junior quarterback

High School: Briar Woods HS, Ashburn, Va.

About McSorley: Came to Penn State after winning three state championships in Virginia as a four-year starter. The Nittany Lions promised him a shot to play quarterback. … In his second year as a starter after guiding PSU to Big Ten Championship in 2016 as a redshirt sophomore. Threw for a school single-season record 3,614 yards in his first year as a starter. … Co-President of the Penn State Chapter. … Rated as one of the Top 20 quarterbacks in the country in passer rating, touchdown passes and passing yards.

What is your most memorable experience as a college football player?

McSorley: Being up on the podium celebrating the Big Ten Championship with my teammates and then continuing the celebration into the locker room.

What drove you to get involved with Uplifting Athletes, and what, if anything, has this experience done for you? McSorley: My parents always preached to me that football was a great platform to be able to do something lasting in life and once I heard about uplifting athletes and the impact it makes on the rare disease community, it was a no brainer to get involved.  Just meeting different guys who share the want to help in the community from around the country and being able to form lasting relationships with some of them has been amazing.

As a player, what is your favorite part of the game day experience at your home stadium?

McSorley: Running into the stadium with the crowd going crazy and fireworks being shot off from above.

Who is your favorite NFL player and why?

McSorley: Drew Brees, similar play style and also similar stature as far as him beating the stigma of being “too short”

If you could have lunch with any one person (dead or alive), who would you choose and why?

McSorley: Sean Taylor, was my favorite player growing up and still one of my all time favorites.

What is your favorite road stadium to play in and why?

McSorley: That’s tough, I’d probably say Iowa even though it was incredibly hard to play there, and the atmosphere is just unreal.

In your words, what are some of the things you are looking for in life after football or big goals for the future?

McSorley: To have a job that I love and am passionate about.

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What is your perfect pizza?

McSorley: Pepperoni and sausage

Last 3 songs you added to your playlist?

McSorley: The whole Future and Young Thug album “Super Slimey”

Taylor Swift or Miley Cyrus?

McSorley: Taylor Swift

 If you could spend the day with any celebrity, who would it be?

McSorley: Lebron James

What was the last movie you went to the theater and saw?

McSorley: American Made

In the Mountains or on a Beach?

McSorley: Beach

 

 

 

 

 

 

Nebraska Chapter President and linebacker Chris Weber a finalist for William V. Campbell Trophy


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Nebraska senior linebacker Chris Weber has been named one of 13 finalists for the William V. Campbell Trophy. Presented by the National Football Foundation (NFF) & College Hall of Fame, the Campbell Trophy recognizes an individual as the absolute best football scholar-athlete in the nation.

A former walk-on and captain of the Huskers, Weber is also the President of the Nebraska Chapter of Uplifting Athletes and has been supporting the rare disease community most of his college career.

“It was a pleasure to get to know Chris very early in his career when he attended our Leadership Conference in 2014. He’s been a strong voice in college football for the rare disease community,” Uplifting Athletes Executive Director Scott Shirley said. “Being chosen as a finalist for the Campbell Trophy requires you to be a great football player, great student and most importantly a great person and leader. Congratulations to Chris and his family.”

A candidate for the Campbell Trophy must be a senior or graduate student in their final year of playing eligibility, possess a GPA of at least 3.2 on a 4.0 scale, have outstanding football ability as a first-team player or significant contributor and have demonstrated strong leadership and citizenship.

Weber, who is seeking to become Nebraska’s third winner of the award, was chosen as one of the finalists from among the 181 individuals nominated as semifinalists.

The 6-3, 240-pound Weber has started all eight games at linebacker this season and leads Nebraska in tackles (66), tackles for loss (six) and pass breakups (five). 

He sports a 3.96 GPA and has already been accepted to medical school at the University of Nebraska Medical Center. He’s a two-time CoSIDA Academic All-District VII selection and a three-time Distinguished Big Ten Scholar.

Weber led the Nebraska Football Uplifting Athletes Road Race earlier this year, which raised more than $35,000 and he’s been named to the Brook Berringer and Tom Osborne Citizenship teams each of the past four years.

The 13 finalists will each receive an $18,000 postgraduate scholarship as a member of the NFF National Scholar-Athlete Class, presented by Fidelity Investments. The finalists will travel to New York City for the 60th NFF Annual Awards Dinner on Dec. 5, where their accomplishments will be highlighted.

At the event, one member of the class will be declared the winner of the 28th William V. Campbell Trophy and have his postgraduate scholarship increased to $25,000. The event, which will take place at the New York Hilton Midtown, will be live streamed on ESPN3, starting at 8:30 p.m. ET.

2017 Beyond The Trophy: Meet Penn State Chapter Co-President and LB Jason Cabinda


JASON CABINDAEach week during the college football season we will feature a player who is an officer for an Uplifting Athletes Chapter for our Beyond the Trophy series.

 Name: Jason Cabinda

College: Penn State University

Height, weight, class, position: 6-1, 234-pound senior linebacker

High School: Hunterdon Central HS, Flemington, NJ

About Cabinda: Jason has played a major role in the emergence of the Nittany Lions as a Big Ten and national college football power. … As a true freshmen in 2014 he appeared in nine games and made his first start against Illinois. He’s been a starter at linebacker since his sophomore season and recently made his 30th start. … He is co-President of the Penn State Chapter and attended the 2017 Leadership Conference. … He’s been on the All-Big Ten team each of the past two seasons, and earlier this year was the Big Ten co-Defensive Player of the Week after his 13-tackle effort against Michigan. … Jason is one several postseason award watch lists for 2017.

What is your most memorable experience as a college football player?

Cabinda: My most memorable experience as a football player would have to be last years Whiteout in which we were able to beat Ohio State who at the time was the No. 2 team in the nation getting that upset and watching the crowd storm the field was great.

What drove you to get involved with Uplifting Athletes, and what, if anything, has this experience done for you?

Cabinda: I had first heard about it after a team meeting and just thought that it was simply another way I could get involved on campus and in the community and use my influence in a good way. It has taught me just how fortunate we are each day and to know that you should never take your health for granted.

As a player, what is your favorite part of the game day experience at your home stadium?

Cabinda: Just seeing how crazy the fans are in the stadium and feeding off that energy when we first run out that gate is the best. Taking the time to really just breathe and take it all in is always awesome.

Who is your favorite NFL player and why?

Cabinda: My favorite NFL player would probably be Gerald Hodges just because I love the way he plays downhill and I hope to be able to be as a good as he is one day.

If you could have lunch with any one person (dead or alive), who would you choose and why?

Cabinda: It would be Lebron James just because he’s my favorite athlete and he’s someone whose brain I would love to pick apart.

What is your favorite road stadium to play in and why?

Cabinda: It would probably have to be playing in the Iowa stadium just because of how hostile of an environment it was it’s a great feeling to get a win there.

In your words, what are some of the things you are looking for in life after football or big goals for the future?

Cabinda: Definitely would have to be going into sports broadcasting which is something I have grown an admiration for since being in college and definitely something I would really like to pursue.

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What is your perfect pizza?

Cabinda: Barbecue chicken pizza with bacon on it

Last 3 songs you added to your playlist?

Cabinda: Word of Mouth –Shotta Spence; No cap –Future and Young thug; Pick it up- Famous Dex and A$AP Rocky

Taylor Swift or Miley Cyrus?

Cabinda: Neither

 If you could spend the day with any celebrity, who would it be?

Cabinda: Leonardo Dicaprio

What was the last movie you went to the theater and saw?

Cabinda: All eyez on me

In the Mountains or on a Beach?

Cabinda: Beach

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

2017 Beyond The Trophy: Meet Syracuse QB Zack Mahoney


MAHONEY 1Each week during the college football season we will feature a player who is an officer for an Uplifting Athletes Chapter for our Beyond the Trophy series.

 Name: Zack Mahoney

College: Syracuse University

Height, weight, class, position: 6-2, 217-pound senior quarterback

High School: Lyons Township in LaGrange Park, Illinois

About Mahoney: After one year playing at a junior college, Mahoney enrolled at Syracuse as a walk-on in January 2015. … Has appeared in 18 career game with seven starts and has thrown for nearly 1,500 yards with 15 touchdowns. … Three of his seven career starts are against Top 25 teams. … Was given a scholarship prior to 2016 season. … Shares the school record for touchdown passes in a single game with five. … President of the Syracuse Chapter and a current member of SAAC.

What is your most memorable experience as a college football player?

Mahoney: My most memorable experience was receiving a scholarship from Coach (Dino) Babers.

What drove you to get involved with Uplifting Athletes, and what, if anything, has this experience done for you?

Mahoney: I have a friend back home, Blake, who has a rare disease, Niemann Pic-C, and I have seen how rare diseases affect families first hand. I wanted to be able to help those in the Syracuse area who were going through something similar to Blake. This experience has really opened my eyes up to the true power of sports and the impact it has on our communities.

.As a player, what is your favorite part of the game day experience at your home stadium?

Mahoney: Running out of the tunnel. There is no feeling like running out of some smoke to 30,000 screaming fans.

Who is your favorite NFL player and why?

Mahoney: Tom Brady. He was questioned a lot coming out of college and did nothing but work hard to become the greatest NFL quarterback of all time.

If you could have lunch with any one person (dead or alive), who would you choose and why?

Mahoney: Big Cat and PFT. They are some true football guys guys. I think it would be a very entertaining meal.

What is your favorite road stadium to play in and why?

Mahoney: Clemson. They had a very nice atmosphere and it was one of the nicer road fields I have played on.

In your words, what are some of the things you are looking for in life after football or big goals for the future?

Mahoney: I want to play football for as a long as I can. I want football to be a part of my life for as long as I am living. With all that being said, I would also love to help as many people as I can through the power of football.

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What is your perfect pizza?

Mahoney: Girodano’s, Chicago deep dish pizza

Last 3 songs you added to your playlist?

Mahoney: AC/DC: Thunderstruck, Cardi B: Bodak Yellow, Jesse McCartney: Beautiful Soul

Taylor Swift or Miley Cyrus?

Mahoney: Miley Cyrus

 If you could spend the day with any celebrity, who would it be?

Mahoney: Rob Gronkowski, he is a wonderful football player and really knows how to send it

What was the last movie you went to the theater and saw?

Mahoney: Hitman’s Bodyguard, our coach made us go see it

In the Mountains or on a Beach?

Mahoney: Beach

What’s the last picture you took with your phone?

Mahoney: A picture of my dog

 

2017 Beyond The Trophy: Meet Clemson kicker Christian Groomes


Clemson kicker Christian Groomes (39) attempts a field goal during practice.

Each week during the college football season we will feature a player who is an officer for an Uplifting Athletes Chapter for our Beyond the Trophy series.

 Name: Christian Groomes

College: Clemson University

Height, weight, class, position: 5-11, 200-pound senior kicker

High School: Daniel High School, Central, South Carolina

About Groomes: Came to Clemson as a walk-on kicker and has appeared in three games during his career. … Is the President of the Clemson Chapter of Uplifting Athletes. … Made his debut in 2015 for the Tigers by kicking off and notched his first career extra point against Syracuse in 2016. … His younger brother, Carter, is a also a walk-on for the Clemson Tigers.

What is your most memorable experience as a college football player?

Groomes: Being able to be part of a National Championship run in 2016 with a great group of guys who bought in to what we were going to do as a team.

What drove you to get involved with Uplifting Athletes, and what, if anything, has this experience done for you?

Groomes: I really have a soft spot for people who have diseases in general. It really breaks my heart, and I have never really had a way to help them out and Uplifting Athletes has given me that. This experience has opened my eyes to really see how many rare diseases there are and all of the possibilities that there are to help.

As a player, what is your favorite part of the game day experience at your home stadium?

Groomes: Definitely rubbing Howards’ Rock and running down The Hill for “The Most Exciting 25 seconds in College Football.”

Who is your favorite NFL player and why?

Groomes: Peyton Manning. I have always looked up to him as a player and a role model for how to live a great Christian life. He is also a wonderful family man.

If you could have lunch with any one person (dead or alive), who would you choose and why?

Groomes: Chipper Jones. I loved him growing up as a baseball player and I tried to play like him when I played.

 What is your favorite road stadium to play in and why?

Groomes: The Arizona Cardinals stadium was my favorite. We have played there 2 times, the grass there is just unreal.

In your words, what are some of the things you are looking for in life after football or big goals for the future?

Groomes: I am hoping to get a job when I graduate and have good family one day.

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What is your perfect pizza?

Groomes: Chicken Bacon Ranch Pizza

Last 3 songs you added to your playlist?

Groomes: Criminals by Xuitcasecity, Scared To Be Lonely (Brooks Remix) by Martin Garrix, Children of a Miracle by Don Diablo

Taylor Swift or Miley Cyrus?

Groomes: T Swift all the way

 If you could spend the day with any celebrity, who would it be?

Groomes: Tiger Woods

What was the last movie you went to the theater and saw?

Groomes: Don’t go see movies, no clue when the last time was

In the Mountains or on a Beach?

Groomes: Beach

What’s the last picture you took with your phone?

Groomes: Of the Eclipse

 

 

 

2017 Beyond The Trophy: Meet NC State tight end Cole Cook


COLE COOK IMAGEEach week during the college football season we will feature a player who is an officer for an Uplifting Athletes Chapter for our Beyond the Trophy series.

 Name: Cole Cook

College: North Carolina State University

Height, weight, class, position: 6-6, 250-pound senior tight end

High School: Carrollton High School, Carrollton, Georgia

About Cook: In his fourth season of seeing consistent snaps for the Wolfpack. … President of the NC State Chapter. … Caught his first career touchdown pass in 2016 against Old Dominion. … In 2015 earned team’s Bob Warren Award for integrity and sportsmanship. … Last year was awarded the team’s Al Michaels Award for putting team before self. … Named to the 2014-15 ACC Academic Honor Roll.

What is your most memorable experience as a college football player?

Cook: My most memorable experience up to this point was us beating Notre Dame last year in the middle of Hurricane Matthew. I have never played in anything like that before in all my life. It was so fun and I’m glad we came out with the W.

What drove you to get involved with Uplifting Athletes, and what, if anything, has this experience done for you?

Cook: As student-athletes we have unbelievable influence in our community. I thought getting involved with Uplifting Athletes would be a fantastic opportunity to make a difference. Being involved with Uplifting Athletes has made me realize how truly lucky I am to get to be able to play this game, as well as educate me on the impact of rare diseases on Americans.

As a player, what is your favorite part of the game day experience at your home stadium?

Cook: My favorite part of game day is winning a big game and walking by the student section and giving everybody high fives. Then we go into the locker room and celebrate as a team. It is the best feeling in the world to know that you and your teammates have accomplished what we worked so hard to do during the week.

Who is your favorite NFL player and why?

Cook: Jason Witten, tight end for the Cowboys. He is a Christian, a great leader, tough, and an amazing player. He is someone I have always tried to model my game after.

If you could have lunch with any one person (dead or alive), who would you choose and why?

Cook: I would want to have lunch with Jesus. I would have so many questions and I would want to just sit and listen.

What is your favorite road stadium to play in and why?

Cook: Clemson is a fun place to play. It is always super loud and it has so much energy.

In your words, what are some of the things you are looking for in life after football or big goals for the future?

Cook: When I am done playing, I want to be a Director of Football Operations for college football team. I love the game, and I hope to work around it for as long as I can. I want to use football to set me up for the rest of my life. I also wold be interested in maybe starting my own business someday.

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What is your perfect pizza?

Cook: BBQ chicken

Last 3 songs you added to your playlist?

Cook: Lynyrd Skynyrd Greatest Hits

Taylor Swift or Miley Cyrus?

Cook: Neither

If you could spend the day with any celebrity, who would it be?

Cook: Marcus Luttrell

What was the last movie you went to the theater and saw?

Cook: War for the Planet of the Apes

In the Mountains or on a Beach?

Cook: Mountains

What’s the last picture you took with your phone?

Cook: A funny picture of one of my teammates on film

 

 

2017 Beyond The Trophy: Meet Northwestern University offensive lineman Tommy Doles


TOMMY DOLES IMAGE

Each week during the college football season we will feature a player who is an officer for an Uplifting Athletes Chapter for our Beyond the Trophy series.

 Name: Tommy Doles

College: Northwestern University

Height, weight, class, position: 6-6, 280-pound redshirt junior offensive lineman

High School: Grand Rapids Christian, Grand Rapids, Michigan

About Doles: In his second season as starting right guard for the Wildcats after playing in all 13 games last year and earning All-Big Ten honorable mention honors. … President of the Northwestern Uplifting Athletes Chapter. … Father, Jack, is a sports broadcaster and comes from a long line of college student-athletes. His grandfather played basketball at DePaul, cousin played football at Iowa State and two aunts played Division I volleyball. … Won a Division 3 Michigan State Championship and was voted All-State his senior year of high school. … Academic All-Big Ten selection in 2016 who chose Northwestern over Michigan and the service academies.

What is your most memorable experience as a college football player?

Doles: Winning the Pinstripe Bowl at Yankee Stadium in 2016; we had worked so hard to get there, and played a great game in an amazing environment.

What drove you to get involved with Uplifting Athletes, and what, if anything, has this experience done for you?

Doles: My Grandpa passed away during my freshman year of college after a four-year struggle with ALS. When I heard about an organization that was working to align college football with rare disease research, I knew I had to get involved. Uplifting Athletes has connected me with some wonderful people and allowed me to grow as a leader, all the while allowing me to use my platform as a college football player for a worthy cause.

As a player, what is your favorite part of the game day experience at your home stadium?

Doles: Singing the fight song with the student section after a ‘Cats victory!

Who is your favorite NFL player and why?

Doles: Kirk Cousins – he is a West Michigander like me, and has remained humble and true to his values despite his success. I was inspired by his book ‘Game Changer’ and have sought to follow his example of using the platform of college football for something worthwhile.

If you could have lunch with any one person (dead or alive), who would you choose and why?

Doles: I’m a history nerd and an offensive lineman who likes lunch, so this is a tough one. I’d say Abraham Lincoln. Wouldn’t it be fascinating to hear a firsthand account of the most trying and formative time in our nation’s history from the man who was steering the ship?

What is your favorite road stadium to play in and why?

Doles: Nebraska has a tremendous game day environment, and their fans are very classy. I did also enjoy playing at Michigan State, as I got to see quite a few high school friends after the game, even if they were wearing green!

In your words, what are some of the things you are looking for in life after football or big goals for the future?

Doles: I will continue to put my faith first (Matthew 16:26), and hope to be blessed with a family someday. Vocationally, I want to serve my country and act as a servant leader towards others, starting as an officer in the Army.

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What is your perfect pizza?

Doles: Chicago style deep dish, or course, with plenty of meat and cheese, and surrounded by family and teammates.

Last three songs you added to your playlist?

Doles: The theme song from Band of Brothers, Ever Be (Aaron Shust), and Get Down on It (Kool & the Gang). Eclectic, right?

Taylor Swift or Miley Cyrus?
Doles: Lauren Daigle

If you could spend the day with any celebrity, who would it be?

Doles: Matthew McConaughey, he’s an interesting guy

What was the last movie you went to the theater and saw?

Doles: Dunkirk – Wow!

In the mountains or on a beach?

Doles: Tough one considering the beaches in Pure Michigan, but mountains

What’s the last picture you took with your phone?

Doles: Running back and NU Uplifting Athletes Chapter Vice President Chad Hanaoka playing his ukulele in the stands of Ryan Field as the sun set on Chicago and training camp 2017