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Nebraska's C.J. Zimmerer Voted as 2014 Rare Disease Champion

Saturday, February 01, 2014
Andy Shay

Uplifting Athletes, on behalf of the 30 million Americans affected by a rare disease, is proud to announce that Nebraska fullback C.J. Zimmerer is the 2014 Rare Disease Champion Award winner.

Zimmerer became the sixth Rare Disease Champion from a field of finalists that also included Florida State head coach Jimbo Fisher, Texas quarterback Case McCoy, Stony Brook head coach Chuck Priore and Utah linebacker/defensive end Trevor Reilly.

The 2014 champion was decided by a public online vote, with over 15,000 total votes cast.

Zimmerer becomes the second Husker to win the Uplifting Athletes Rare Disease Champion trophy. Former Nebraska and current Cincinnati Bengals running back Rex Burkhead won the award in 2012.

“C.J. continues a strong tradition of selfless service to others by using his platform as a college player to expand and promote the mission of inspiring the rare disease community with hope,” Uplifting Athletes Executive Director Scott Shirley said.

The Rare Disease Champion Award is presented annually by Uplifting Athletes to a leader in the world of college football who has realized his or her potential to make a positive and lasting impact on the rare disease community.

Zimmerer will be presented his 2014 Rare Disease Champion Trophy at the Maxwell Club Awards Gala on March 14, 2014 at Revel Casino in Atlantic City.

Previous winners of the award include American Football Coaches Association Executive Director Grant Teaff (2009); Dickinson College quarterback Ian Mitchell (2010); Princeton running back Jordan Culbreath (2011); Burkhead (2012) and Penn State offensive lineman Eric Shrive (2013).