ATLANTA - Emily Dayton, a sophomore defender on the University of Dallas women's soccer team, has been named a 2013 Coach (John) Wooden Collegiate Citizenship Cup semifinalist for her efforts as a student-athlete and work with non-profit organization "You Can NOT Be Replaced."
Dayton, a native of Manasquan, N.J., helped Dallas to seven shutouts and a 12-8-1 record in 2012, a season in which the Lady Crusaders finished runner-up in the Southern Collegiate Athletic Conference.
Not only has she excelled on the field, but Dayton and her family founded "You Can Not Be Replaced" to remind teens how special they truly are and to help prevent teen suicide.
In a letter posted within youcannotbereplaced.com, Dayton says, "You never know what a
simple act of kindness will do to make a difference; holding the door, saying thank you, sitting
with someone who is alone, or even making eye contact while giving a simple smile. You don't know what they're feeling inside or what their story is, so smile and pass the bands; you will change someone's day."
The "bands" referenced by Dayton refer to rubber wrist bracelets the organization offers upon request. They are stamped with the motto "I Can NOT Be Replaced," and anyone who receives a band is asked to "wear it until you see someone that you feel the band is supposed to be passed to: Whether you know them or not. This could be tomorrow, next month or a year from now. You'll know when it's time."
"When you do pass it, tell the person something positive about them or life. That one small act of kindness will not ever be wasted and the band is replaceable but the person is not."
Dayton and her family promoted the organization through events in her hometown this past summer, which included dinners and soccer tournaments.
Dayton joins a heralded group of individuals as a 2013 Coach Wooden Collegiate Citizenship Cup semifinalist.
Organized by "Athletes for a Better World (ABW)," the Coach Wooden Citizenship Cup Committee has sifted through 75-100 collegiate nominations each year since the award's 2005 inception. The committee is chaired by Vincent Dooley, former University of Georgia athletic director, and other distinguished individuals involved in athletics across the country.
Frederick B. Northup, ABW president, reflected on the selection process and character of student-athletes such as Dayton.
"How humbling it is to read these nominations," Northup said, "and how challenging it is to try to select which candidates are in some way more distinctive."
The 2013 Collegiate Wooden Cup recipient will be announced during an award ceremony slated Wednesday, April 23, at the Fox Theatre's Egyptian Ballroom in Atlanta. Click here for the full release.
2013 Coach Wooden Collegiate Citizenship Cup semifinalists:
- Matt Barkley, University of Southern California, Football
- Shayla Bivins, Georgia Tech, Basketball
- Michael Clay, University of Oregon, Football
- Akeem Davis, University of Memphis, Football
- Emily Dayton, University of Dallas, Soccer
- Dimonde Hale, Dennison University, Basketball
- Dave Harding, Duke University, Football
- Samantha Hodge, Western Carolina University, Soccer
- Tanya Joseph, Wayne State University, Tennis
- Tracy King, North Carolina A&T University, Basketball
- Collin Klein, Kansas State University, Football
- Jordan Kovacs, University of Michigan, Football
- Megan Moir, University of Kentucky, Golf
- Malach Radigan, Lindenwood University, Football
- Megan Rhodes, Radford University, Soccer
- Matt Rowley, Bethel College, Baseball
- Rachel Storz, Agnes Scott College, Tennis
- Kassandra Vegas, Northern Arizona University, Track and Field
- Dalaine Whitlock, Concordia University, Soccer
- Alyssa Zupon, Yale University, Ice Hockey
2013 Coach Wooden Collegiate Citizenship Cup finalists:
- Brigetta Barrett, University of Arizona, Track and Field
- Nathanael Franks, University of Arkansas, Track and Field
- Meghan Lyons, University of North Carolina, Field Hockey
- Andrea Mingo, Purdue University, Basketball
- Eric Soza, University of Texas at San Antonio, Football
About Athletes for a Better World:
Founded in 1998, Athletes for a Better World (ABW) exists to change the culture of sport by developing individual character, teamwork, and civic responsibility through commitment to the Code for Living. ABW's vision is to have the Code become a part of every sport at every level, so that it becomes the common language and standard expectation of behavior for everyone. ABW provides free support and resources to coaches and athletes across the country who want to teach and live out these values. "The Code for Living" can be found on playing fields, locker rooms and athletic facilities across the country. Currently, ABW players and coaches are represented in every state and several foreign countries.