Dancy Named Finalist for Rare Disease Champion Award

Dec. 8, 2017

HARRISBURG, Pa. - More than a year removed from his diagnosis of Hodgkin lymphoma, Louisiana Tech running back Jaqwis Dancy has been named one of four finalists for the 2018 Uplifting Athletes Rare Disease Champion Award, it was announced by the organization on Thursday night at the Home Depot College Football Awards Show in Atlanta.

The Uplifting Athletes Rare Disease Champion Award is given to a leader in college football who has realized his or her potential to make a positive and lasting impact on the rare disease community. Along with Dancy, the three additional finalists for the award include Shaquem Griffin (UCF), Zack Mahoney (Syracuse) and Casey O’Brien (Minnesota).

Dancy was diagnosed with stage 3 Hodgkin lymphoma in October of 2016 before enduring four months of chemotherapy and radiation treatments at St. Jude’s Research Hospital in Memphis. In February of 2017, he was declared cancer-free and officially began his comeback.

Dancy’s return to football started during the spring, but it was the 2017 season opener versus Northwestern State that was a landmark day for the redshirt sophomore running back. Dancy helped secure a 52-24 victory over Northwestern State when he scored his first career touchdown in front of family, friends and fans at Joe Aillet Stadium.

Over the course of his comeback season, Dancy has rushed for 262 yards and two touchdowns, including a career day for the Junction City, Arkansas native in LA Tech’s win over UTEP with 135 rushing yards and a touchdown.

A public online vote is used to determine the winner of the Rare Disease Champion Award. You can vote once per day for your favorite finalist at www.upliftingathletes.org/rare-disease-champion and voting will be live when the finalists are announced.

Uplifting Athletes is now a member of the National College Football Awards Association (NCFAA). So, for the first time in the 10-year history of the Rare Disease Champion Award, the finalists will be officially announced on the red carpet prior to the Home Depot College Football Awards Show in Atlanta on Thursday, December 7.



The finalist with the most votes will be winner. The 2018 champion will be officially announced Feb. 1 as part of the Rare Disease Month celebration.

The 2018 Rare Disease Champion will be honored as part of the Maxwell Football Club Awards Gala on March 9 in Atlantic City, New Jersey, at the Tropicana Casino & Resort.

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A nonprofit organization founded in 2007, Uplifting Athletes inspires the rare disease community with hope through the power of sport. A rare disease is one that affects fewer than 200,000 Americans and typically lacks financial incentive to make and market new treatments. With a network of university chapters run by current college football student-athletes that spans all major conferences, Uplifting Athletes has had an economic impact of more than $400 million on the rare disease community. For more information about Uplifting Athletes, visit www.upliftingathletes.org.


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