Abby Wambach stars at 2015 ESPYS but other nominated Florida Gators fall short

By Adam Silverstein
July 15, 2015

Former Florida Gators striker and U.S. Women’s National Team captain Abby Wambach played a starring role at the 2015 ESPYS on Wednesday, presenting one of the most prestigious awards of the night and taking home an honor herself.

Wambach began the evening as a presenter, standing on stage to announce Caitlyn Jenner as the recipient of the Arthur Ashe Courage Award. Just moments later, 2015 FIFA Women’s World Cup-winning United States women’s soccer was announced as winners of “Best Team,” so Wambach took the stage a second time to lead her team and deliver their short acceptance speech.

Now the recipient of two ESPYS – she won “Best Play” in 2011 for her last-minute game-tying header in the 2011 World Cup – Wambach was the only former Gators player to bring home honors on Wednesday.

Florida softball pitcher Lauren Haeger watched as Cleveland Cavaliers superstar LeBron James, who failed to win a title in 2015, brought home “Best Championship Performance.” She was also nominated for “Best Female College Athlete” but fell to California swimmer Missy Franklin, who also bested Haeger for the 2015 Honda Sports Award.

Former Gators golfer Billy Horschel, winner of the 2014 FedEx Cup, was edged by back-to-back major winner Jordan Spieth for “Best Golfer.” Horschel was unable to attend the ESPYS as he is preparing to play in the 2015 British Open.


  1. Mike The Red says:

    ESPYS stands for Excellence in Sports Performance Yearly Award. Can anyone tell me how Caitlyn Jenner qualifies for that?

    “Caitlyn” Jenner gets an award but Lauren Haeger is left sitting on the sideline. You got to be kidding. This is a bad joke. Has everyone gone completely insane?

    • SaraGator says:

      ESPN is similar to TMZ. I just hope they don’t do the same with the SEC Network. Only thing worth watching are games and documentaries.

    • HeadOfficial says:

      The Academy Awards are given to commemorate outstanding accomplishments in the film industry over the previous year. There is also a special award called “The Lifetime Achievement” usually given to an actor or actress that was in a million movies but was never a star.

      As a result of winning the 1976 Olympic decathlon, Jenner became a national hero, receiving the James E. Sullivan Award as the top amateur athlete in the United States and being named the Associated Press Male Athlete of the Year.

      This is for the ESPY he would have won if they existed at that time!

      • Mike The Red says:

        Give me a break. That is an absurd rationalization.

        Let me try an alternate explanation. ESPY rewarded a publicity hound who attempted to make himself relevant again by mutilating himself.

      • Ken (CA) says:

        Maybe you should go look at many of the people who get “lifetime achievement” Academy awards. Not Stars? Lauren Bacall, James Earl Jones, Eli Wallach, Steve Martin, Angela Lansbury, Peter O’Toole, Blake Edwards, Sidney Lumet, Sir Sidney Poitier just to name a few in the last 20 years or so. You couldn’t be further wrong in your analysis of who gets that award.

    • Ken (CA) says:

      It is nothing more than the progressive fundamental change of America. There was nothing heroic or courageous about getting a boob job. By his own admission, he still has his man tool. How about someone like Lauren Hill who has been battling cancer and still trying to play college BB and compete as long as she could? There are many others who have fought through adversity and truly shown courage, this is just the political distraction of the day for them and it is really sad.