In addition to South Carolina basketball's 3 nominations, ESPYs to honor Dawn Staley

South Carolina basketball coach Dawn Staley is set to receive special recognition at this year's ESPYs.
South Carolina basketball coach Dawn Staley after winning her third National Championship
South Carolina basketball coach Dawn Staley after winning her third National Championship / Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

On Wednesday, news broke that ESPN had nominated South Carolina basketball for three ESPY awards. The 2023-2024 undefeated National Championship-winning team was up for the Best Team honor, and Gamecock legend A'ja Wilson was on the ballot for Best Athlete, Women's Sports and for Best WNBA Player.

On Thursday, the worldwide leader revealed that, in addition to those three nominations, there was another honor coming as South Carolina basketball head coach Dawn Staley will receive the Jimmy V Award for Perseverance.

Not only did Coach Staley orchestrate one of the most impressive seasons in the history of women's college basketball when she became a champion on the court (for the third time), but she also was a champion for those battling cancer off of it, something that is central to the efforts of the V Foundation.

With her sister Tracy Underwood and good friend and fellow coach Nikki McCray-Penson having been through cancer (McCray-Penson tragically passed away last summer after repeated battles with breast cancer), Coach Staley has been inspired to partner with numerous organizations to help promote better livelihoods for those undergoing cancer treatments, including supporting children fighting the disease.

In addition to her efforts to aid in raising support for cancer research, screenings, and treatments, Staley also has been a life-long fighter against inequality in sports, especially as it relates to women's basketball and the black community.

Staley is one of three special honorees who were announced on Thursday.

Former Saints defensive back Steve Gleason (who is battling ALS) is receiving the Arthur Ashe Award for Courage for his courageous fight and his inspiration of change in the medical community, and the Pat Tillman Award for Service will be given to Prince Harry, Duke of Sussex for his support of the military and veterans, not just in England, but internationally.

The 2024 ESPYs will be aired live on ABC (and streamed on the ESPN app) on Thursday, July 11th at 8:00 PM ET.

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