J-Mac Celebrates ESPY Award, Bobblehead
By Dave Reynolds, Inclusion Daily Express
July 19, 2006
ROCHESTER, NEW YORK--Jason "J-Mac" McElwain appeared more excited to spend time with his sports idols than he was winning his ESPY award Sunday.
"That was the greatest experience in the world I've ever done in all this, because you get to spend time with the greatest athletes," the 17-year-old told Rochester's WHAM-TV. "My number one man I wanted to meet was Kobe Bryant."
In fact, McElwain beat out Bryant to win ESPN's award for the "Best Sports Moment" of the year.
On February 15, the coach of the Athena Greece High School basketball team decided to put McElwain in for the final four minutes of the last game of the regular season as a way of saying thanks for his support and help during the season. In those four minutes, McElwain, who has autism and had never played for the team, scored 20 points -- including sinking six 3-pointers in a row.
A video of the feat was broadcast around the world, and caught the eye of President Bush, who later stopped in Rochester to meet "J-Mac". It also got the attention of basketball legend Magic Johnson, who has put together a movie deal with Columbia Pictures to recreate the event on film. The movie is expected out within the next two years.
McElwain's school district had been working for the previous six years to include students with disabilities in the regular classrooms and after school activities.
Next up for McElwain: The J-Mac Bobblehead, 3,000 of which are to be given away at the July 26 Red Wings game.
"J-Mac Savors ESPY Win" with video clip (WHAM-TV)
Photo of J-Mac Bobblehead