Another South Dakotan to receive an ESPY

NSU coach Don Meyer instructs freshman Tramel Barnes during Meyer's first game back on the sidelines following a near-fatal car accident. (Photo courtesy of NSU)News came yesterday that, for the second year in a row, a South Dakotan will receive one of ESPN’s ESPY awards.

Last year, Wagner High School wrestler Ryan Kocer was named the Best Male Athlete with a Disability. Kocer, a three-time state champion, lost his leg just above the knee in an accident prior to his senior year. Despite that disability, he came back to wrestling and managed to place fourth in his final state tournament.

This year, Northern State University men’s basketball coach Don Meyer will receive the Jimmy V Perseverance Award.

Here’s part of what an NSU news release says about the honor:

Meyer’s award comes following his remarkable recovery from a Sept. 5 car accident that resulted in the amputation of part of his left leg.  However, neither the accident nor the subsequent cancer diagnosis were able to stop him from returning to the sidelines for the 2008-09 season, which saw him become the winningest men’s basketball coach in NCAA history. Meyer led the Wolves to victory on Jan. 10 to record his 903rd career win, breaking the previous record held by Bobby Knight. Meyer finished the season with 910 career wins.

The Jimmy V Award for Perseverance is named for the late Jimmy Valvano, who coached at North Carolina State and later was an ESPN commentator before passing away from cancer. The award is presented to a deserving member of the sporting world who has overcome great obstacles through physical determination and perseverance.

The awards will be presented Wednesday, July 15, and the taped show will air Sunday, July 19, on ESPN.

For more about Meyer, click here for a great story by ESPN.

Categories: General News

About Author

Seth Tupper

Seth Tupper was born and raised in South Dakota and earned a bachelor's degree in journalism from South Dakota State University in 2001. After college, he worked at a newspaper in Minnesota and then returned to South Dakota in 2003 to join the staff of The Daily Republic in Mitchell, where he is currently the publisher. Seth has won numerous awards for his writing, including the 2007 Outstanding Young Journalist award in the daily newspapers category of the South Dakota Newspaper Association's Better Newspapers Contest. Seth's day-job and freelance work have granted him opportunities to meet hundreds of South Dakotans and travel across much of the state. He also spends a lot of his free time exploring South Dakota's state and national parks, hiking trails and kayak-friendly rivers.


  1. Jimmy T
    Jimmy T 21 June, 2011, 16:02

    I am glad that Coach Meyer won this award – he is a beast and he deserved it. Here is a cool article about Coach Meyer and the ESPYs:

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