That September Wave …

It all began with a “wave”.

Disney Salutes the ‘Kinnick Wave’ with the 2017 Disney Sports Spirit Award

Darrell Fryby , Sports Media Director, Walt Disney World Resort

Raising your hand and waving at someone seems like such a simple gesture but it is having an immense impact on a group of young people in need in Iowa. The waving is part of a new tradition at the University of Iowa’s home football games that is inspiring the patients at a nearby hospital.

Because of this simple but moving gesture, Disney Sports is proud to announce it is presenting the Iowa football program with its coveted Disney Sports Spirit Award, which annually goes to the sport’s most inspirational figure.

Here’s how the Iowa football program is lifting the spirits of sick children every week this season. At the end of the first quarter of every home game, their Kinnick Stadium announcer urges all of the fans inside the stadium to turn and wave to the young patients at the children’s hospital that’s next door to the stadium. Even the visiting team and the referees join in on the wave.


Watch ESPN tonight at 6 p.m. CST to see Kirk Ferentz accept the Disney Sports Spirit Award for “The Wave,” representing all who have supported our patients and families this season! The annual award is given to college football’s most inspirational player, coach, team, or figure.

📷: Jeffrey Becker, USA Today Sports Images

Iowa Hawkeyes’ new tradition is more than just a wave | ESPN

Tom Rinaldi takes a deeper look into how much the Iowa Hawkeyes’ new tradition of waving to the University of Iowa Stead Family Children’s Hospital means to each kid looking on.


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