Fifteen-year-old Saints superfan Jarrius Robertson, who is battling a chronic liver disease, made a lasting impression on players that he met during a 2015 hospital visit. Since then, he's often seen cheering on the sidelines and has been crowned the official "hype man" for the team.
"When I first heard the news I thought I was dreaming!" Robertson said in a statement. "The ESPYS? For real? The past two years have been a blessing in so many ways for me and my family. I have been able to do things I never thought I would be able to do. But to be included with Craig Sager, Stuart Scott, Leah and Devon Still, Eric LeGrand and the man himself, Jimmy V, is truly amazing and I am really grateful and humbled."
Robertson has biliary atresia, a condition that affects his physical growth and required two transplant surgeries. Named for James Valvano, the Jimmy V Perseverance Award is given to someone in sports who has overcome great obstacles through perseverance and determination.
"Jarrius is such an inspirational young man," Saints quarterback Drew Brees said. "His strength, determination and resolve along with his infectious energy and attitude should be an example that no matter the circumstances or adversity, with a positive outlook and embracing the motto of 'Don't give up. ... Don't ever give up,' there isn't a challenge that cannot be conquered."
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