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Courtesy: Duke Athletics
ACC Unveils 2018 Postgraduate Scholarship Recipients
Courtesy: Duke Sports Information
Release: 02/28/2018
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GREENSBORO, N.C. – The Atlantic Coast Conference announced today a list of 52 student-athletes who have been selected as 2018 Weaver-James-Corrigan Award recipients. This year’s list includes three student-athletes who will receive the Thacker Award and nine student-athletes who plan to pursue professional careers in their chosen sports and were named honorary recipients.

Duke’s Gabe Brandner, Schuyler DeBree and Madison Heath were named Weaver-James-Corrigan Award recipients while Leona Maguire was an honorary selection.

The Weaver-James-Corrigan and Jim and Pat Thacker postgraduate scholarships are awarded to selected student-athletes who intend to pursue a graduate degree following completion of their undergraduate requirements. Each recipient will receive $5,000 toward his or her graduate education. Those honored have performed with distinction in both the classroom and their respective sport, while demonstrating exemplary conduct in the community.

In addition to those receiving scholarship funds, nine student-athletes will receive the Weaver-James-Corrigan Honorary Award. The Weaver-James-Corrigan Award is named in honor of the late Jim Weaver and Bob James, as well as Gene Corrigan, the first three ACC commissioners.

Brandner was a three-year starting offensive tackle for the Blue Devil football team, helping the program to 28 wins over four seasons, three bowl game appearances (2014 Hyundai Sun, 2015 New Era Pinstripe Bowl and 2017 Quick Lane Bowl) and two bowl victories. On the field, Brandner was part of a group that collected 38 wins during a five-year span, 2013-17, the seventh most in Duke history and the most since the 1938-42 seasons. The Blythewood, S.C., product was named a semifinalist for the National Football Foundation National Scholar-Athlete award, as well as the Wuerffel Trophy. He earned a place on the AFCA Good Works Team. A recipient of a 2017 ACC Top 6 for Service honor for excellence in community service, Brandner has been extremely involved with the local community, serving with the Lideres Unidos Futbol Club, National Inclusion Project, Habitat for Humanity and Kid’s Club in Oxford Manor. 

With over 6,000 minutes of experience on Duke’s back line, DeBree established herself as one of the best defenders in program history over the last four years. The 2017 United Soccer Coaches Third Team All-American was a member of two NCAA College Cup squads in her time in Durham, culminating with a senior year for the record books. DeBree, from Fair Haven, N.J., started in all 26 matches during Duke’s historical 2017 season, which saw the Blue Devils capture the third ACC regular season championship in school history. Playing in a team-high 2,341 minutes, she led a Duke defense that posted a school record 18 shutouts. With a 3.86 career GPA, DeBree was named a First Team Scholar All-American and is a two-time CoSIDA Academic All-District honoree. After her standout career as a Blue Devils, DeBree was selected with the 11th overall pick in the 2018 NWSL College Draft by the Washington Spirit.

Heath is a four-time All-American in the pole vault. The Mandeville, La., native won her first ACC title at the 2017 ACC Indoor Track and Field Championships and she is a four-time All-ACC honoree. Heath has also been a standout in the classroom, as she is a two-time USTFCCCA All-Academic and five-time ACC All-Academic team selection. She has been named to the ACC Academic Honor Roll three times and served as a First Year ACTION mentor at Duke and has also participated in the Collegiate Athlete Pre-medical Experience (CAPE).

A two-time WGCA and ANNIKA Award National Player of the Year, Maguire has turned in one of the best four-year collegiate careers in women’s college golf. She has collected nine wins, 21 top five finishes and 30 top 10 placements over her career with the Blue Devils. Maguire, who hails from Cavan, Ireland, is coming off a season where she posted the second-lowest stroke average in NCAA history, with a 70.29 ledger, to go along with three wins and a runner-up placement at the NCAA Championship. She has counted all 102 rounds she has competed in, while notching 73 even or under par scores and 28 rounds in the 60s. Maguire is a three-time Mark H. McCormack Medal winner and has been the No. 1 ranked amateur golfer in the world for a record 134 weeks.

The student-athletes will be honored at the annual Cone Health ACC Postgraduate Scholarship Luncheon presented by ESPN on April 11. The luncheon will be hosted by the Nat Greene Kiwanis Club at the Sheraton Four Seasons Hotel Imperial Ballroom in Greensboro.

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