The winner of the Jimmy V Perseverance Award, Stuart Scott, is doing his best to pass it on to his daughters. He especially loves going to Sydni's middle-school-age soccer practices and games. "Soccer wasn't his sport," she says. "But he gives me really good advice about how I'm supposed to act and how I should be and how I should play. ? He's told me that if he was playing his 80-year-old mother on the football field, he would not go easy on her ? but he always makes sure that I know what sportsmanship is and what's fair and what's right."
The ESPYS have a lineage of their own. It was at the first ESPYS, on March 4, 1993, that Jim Valvano delivered his moving "Don't give up, don't ever give up" speech, one in which he thanked his parents, Rocco and Angelina, for his passionate nature, and his wife and three daughters for their courage.
It was Jimmy V's acceptance speech for the inaugural Arthur Ashe Courage Award, named for a man who understood how important it was to link generations. When Ashe became the first (and only) African-American man to win the U.S. Open, in 1968, he threw his left arm around the weeping man who had made it all possible: his father, Arthur Sr.
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