FLORIDA STATE — FSU quarterback McKenzie Milton was named the 2021 Mayo Clinic Comeback Player of the Year along with Michigan defensive end Aidan Hutchinson and Kentucky defensive end J.J Weaver.
The award is given out to players with the most compelling comeback stories every year and in addition to a ceremony at the Fiesta Bowl, $30,000 will be donated in the names of the honorees to the general scholarship funds of their schools, with $15,000 being awarded in the names of the three winners and $15,000 to honorable mentions.
From comeback-player.com :
McKenzie Milton, a senior quarterback at Florida State University suffered a catastrophic knee injury while playing for the University of Central Florida in a game at South Florida on Nov. 23, 2018. A two-time Heisman Trophy candidate at the time, the native of Kapolei, Hawaii suffered artery and nerve damage to his leg, a dislocated knee and multiple torn ligaments and tendons. He nearly had his right leg amputated after the helmet-to-knee hit caused a lack of blood flow to his leg. Doctors removed a vein from his left leg to help create a new artery for his right leg to restore blood flow and successfully save this leg. The main goal from the surgeons who operated on him was for him to hopefully one day walk without a limp and without pain. After eight surgical procedures, he persevered through more than 1,000 days of rehabilitation, and in December 2020, transferred to Florida State. As if his story was not remarkable enough, his return to the field seemed straight from a Hollywood script. In the season-opener — a nationally televised game versus Notre Dame — FSU quarterback Jordan Travis was forced to leave the game when his helmet was knocked off with 9:09 left in the game. Milton stepped in and never left, leading the Seminoles on two scoring drives to force overtime against the ninth-ranked team in the country. The performance earned the 5-foot-11 signal-caller starting assignments versus Jacksonville State, Wake Forest, Louisville, and NC State. He will conclude his college career on Jan. 15, at the Hula Bowl in Orlando. STATS: Passing: 81-139- 775 yards - 3 TD – 6 INT (58.3%)
Milton started four games for the Seminoles this past season, completing 58.3 percent of his passes for 775 yards three touchdowns.
The players will be recognized at the PlayStation Fiesta Bowl on Jan. 1, 2022, at State Farm Stadium in Glendale, Arizona.