List of Disney Spirit Award Winners by Year

    Disney Spirit Award winners epitomize the pursuit of excellence while overcoming incredible obstacles. Here are the listed winners by year.

    Disney Spirit Award winners epitomize the pursuit of excellence while overcoming unbelievable obstacles. The award has honored the most inspirational individual or team in college football since 1996. All the Disney Spirit Award winners are listed by year below.

    Disney Spirit Award Winners Listed by Year

    • 2023 – Brian Dooley, Eastern Michigan
    • 2022 – Tylee Craft, North Carolina
    • 2021 – Tre Tipton, Pittsburgh
    • 2020 – Darien Rencher, Clemson
    • 2019 – Casey O’Brien, Minnesota
    • 2018 – Tyler Trent, Purdue
    • 2017 – University of Iowa
    • 2016 – James Conner, Pittsburgh
    • 2015 – Hank Goff, Concordia University (St. Paul, MN)
    • 2014 – Sterling Shepard and Bob Stoops, Oklahoma
    • 2013 – Devon Walker, Tulane
    • 2012 – Nate Boyer, Texas
    • 2011 – Alabama Crimson Tide football team
    • 2010 – D.J. Williams, Arkansas
    • 2009 – Mark Herzlich, Boston College
    • 2008 – Tim Tebow, Florida
    • 2007 – Zerbin Singleton, Navy
    • 2006 – Patrick Henry Hughes, Louisville
    • 2005 – Tulane University
    • 2004 – Tim Frisby, South Carolina
    • 2003 – Neil Parry, San Jose State
    • 2002 – Dewayne White, Louisville
    • 2001 – Air Force, Navy, and Army football teams
    • 2000 – Hameen Ali, William & Mary
    • 1999 – East Carolina University
    • 1998 – Matt Hartl, Northwestern
    • 1997 – Dwight Collins, UCF
    • 1996 – Daniel Huffman, Rossville-Alvin High School

    In 2023, Eastern Michigan’s Brian Dooley became the first member of the EMU program to win the award. He was given the award for multiple reasons but noticeably his now-famous story of giving up his scholarship to a walk-on player in need.

    MORE: Brian Dooley is a Selfless Leader

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