Salisbury WR Wilson named Mayo Clinic Comeback Player of the Year

Salisbury University wide receiver Octavion Wilson was one of three college football players chosen as 2019 Mayo Clinic Comeback Player of the Year.

The award, from the College Sports Information Directors of America and The Associated Press, has never been given to a Division III player before.

The other winners include Oregon State’s Jake Luton and Georgia Southern’s Drew Wilson.

After his freshman season at Mount Union, Wilson was diagnosed with pericarditis, an inflammation of the lining around the heart. Later, as a result of the initial illness, he was diagnosed with peripheral neuropathy, a disease resulting from brain and spinal cord nerve damage, which was causing his body to attack itself.

Wilson was sick and unable to play football for two years, leading him to multiple attempts to end his own life. (If you or someone you know is in distress, the 24/7 Suicide Prevention Lifeline is 1-800-273-8255.)

But he made both physical and psychological gains in recovery, eventually enrolling at Salisbury in 2019 to finish his degree in physics/engineering and to return to the football field.

Wilson led the Sea Gulls with 23 catches for 398 yards and three touchdowns, helping Salisbury to the Elite Eight of the Division III Football Championship Tournament.

Salisbury will receive a $10,000 donation to the school’s general scholarship fund in Wilson’s name for his accomplishments.

Wilson will be honored, along with the other winners, during an on-field ceremony at the PlayStation Fiesta Bowl, one of the College Football Playoff Semifinals, on Dec. 28 in Glendale, Arizona.

You can learn more about Wilson’s story below.

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