Florida Gov. Rick Scott on Thursday presented South Carolina head football coach Steve Spurrier with the state's prestigiou Great Floridian award in a ceremony in Gainesville.
During his time as a student-athlete, Spurrier was a University of Florida Heisman Trophy winning quarterback and later served as head coach for the Gator football program. The "Great Floridian" designation is given in recognition of the outstanding achievements of men and women who have made significant contributions to the progress and welfare of Florida.
Governor Scott said: "It is an honor to present the "Great Floridian" award to football legend and Florida Gator Steve Spurrier. Coach Spurrier is an excellent role model for college student-athletes. As a player and as a coach, he has proven to be a true competitor and leader. Steve's innovative "Fun" and "Gun" coaching style and talent changed the way football in the South is played. I am honored to recognize his accomplishments."
Steve Spurrier said" "I am truly honored to receive this award from Governor Scott. As a former football player in Florida and current coach, I understand first-hand the positive impact football programs have on college student-athletes. It builds leadership, teamwork, and commitment. I am grateful to have had the opportunity to play football in Florida and help foster appreciation for the sport across our nation."
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Only 70 individuals since 1981 have been given this distinct honor, and those honorees represent former governors, civil rights activists, military heroes, Florida Supreme Court Justices and Florida sports figures.