We talk a lot about "the business" of college amateur athletics but it's important to recognize all of the charitable and community efforts Syracuse Orange athletes provide as well.
Riley Dixon, favorite to win the Heisman Trophy (and reason we plan to throw the Ray Guy Award into a river) has been named to the watch list for the 2015 Wuerffel Trophy. Named for Florida quarterback Danny Wuerffel, the award is presented annually to the FBS player that best combines community service with athletic and academic achievement. When he's not busy rewriting the history of punting in football, Dixon is an eight-time Athletic Director's Honor Roll member, part of the Lift For Life movement and much more.
Speaking of Lift For Life, they're inviting fans Syracuse fans to help raise awareness and funds for an important cause at the Syracuse Chapter of Uplifting Athletes annual Lift for Life event on Saturday, July 25 at Coyne Stadium. The fundraiser will raise awareness and research dollars in support of anapestic astrocytoma, the chapter's chosen disease in honor of former SU punter Rob Long, who is in his fourth year of being cancer-free.
The Lift for Life will include small teams of 8 to 10 student-athletes competing in relay races featuring bag jumps, prowler pushes, and tire flips, in addition to the traditional bench press, cone drills and agility races. The event will culminate with a tug-of-war competition. Following the event, fans are invited to interact with the student-athletes on the field to take selfies and get autographs.
Follow the chapter on Twitter here.
Finally, we take a moment to recognize senior linebacker Hernz Laguerre, who has been named a nominee for the 2015 Allstate American Football Coaches Association (AFCA) Good Works Team.
Laguerre is the co-founder of Project G.R.I.N.D. (Greatness Resides In Non-Stop Dedication), a mentorship program that features developmental workshops on time management, leadership, teamwork and other topics for the Westside Academy in Syracuse. A broadcast and digital journalism major, he also serves as an ambassador for Syracuse University's S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications. In that role, Laguerre leads tours for prospective students and helps conduct information sessions for them and their families.
Wins and losses might be what we all notice but there's a lot more going on behind the scenes with SU football.