Comeback Athlete of the Year Award

  1. Purpose

The purpose of this proposal is twofold.  The first is to recommend the establishment of a new award given at the conference level to recognize a student-athlete who has returned from injury to contribute on the field.  The second is to establish the specific procedures by which this new award would be nominated, voted on, and awarded.

  1. Comeback Student-Athlete of the Year
    1. Purpose – This award would be given to an individual at a member institution who participates in a Conference-sponsored sport, has suffered a significant injury, and come back to make significant contributions to their team after recovering.
    2. This award will be voted on by head athletic trainers (with input from their staff; one ballot per athletic training staff).
    3. The head athletic trainer shall be responsible for nominating one (1) individual who they feel qualify for this award.  If there are no individuals who qualify for the award, no nomination is acceptable.  A detailed summary of the injury, recovery, and subsequent contribution shall be submitted to the ATC chair by the conclusion of the Spring Championships.  A summary of the nominees will be comprised and distributed to the membership for voting at the annual meeting of athletic trainers.  If a head athletic trainer will be absent for the meeting, they may submit their votes in advance.
    4. For purposes of this award, a significant injury shall meet the following minimum criteria:
      1. Exclude a student-athlete from participation for more than one month AND include all post-season play that the team participates in (including Conference and NCAA tournaments).
      2. Be serious in nature; life-threatening, requiring EMS activation, surgery, long-term bracing/immobilization, etc.
    5. For purposes of this award, a significant contribution to the team shall meet the following minimum criteria:
      1. Participate in at least 20% of competitions
    6. The ATC Committee Chair shall be responsible for calling for nominations near the end of the Spring Championships and for disseminating the information about the nominees to the head athletic trainers of the member institutions.  Votes shall be sent to the Conference Office for tallying to avoid bias.
    7. Voting individuals will be asked to rank the top three individuals who they think should receive this award.  A first place vote will receive three (3) points, a second place vote will receive two (2) points, and a third place vote will receive one (1) point.  The individual with the highest point total will receive the award.  If there is a tie in the amount of points, the individual with the highest number of first place votes will receive the award.  If there is still a tie, a second round of voting will take place with the individuals from the institutions whose members are involved in the tie restricted from voting.
    8.  Individuals will be prohibited from voting for nominees from their own institution.
    9. The winning individual will receive an award commemorating the achievement.  This award shall be similar in look, but smaller in size to the Athlete of the Year awards.
    10. Future naming of this award to be considered if there is a particularly significant or inspirational individual that represents the spirit of this award.  The current name of the award will be the, “(insert year) Conference Carolinas Comeback Student-Athlete of the Year”

Comeback Athlete of the Year Winners

2019: Zack Bowers, Erskine

2018: Trey Matthews, Southern Wesleyan

2017: No selection

2016: Avery Wallis, Lees-McRae

2015: Nolan Albrecht, Belmont Abbey

2014: Amber Weaver, Barton