Thursday, July 1, 2010

Ferris Alum Jim Bourdlais Strikes Gold In Event For Disabled Athletes,Thunder In The Valley Games

Check out this cool story posted on the Ferris State University Athletics Web site featuring former Bulldog football player and FSU alum Jim Bourdlais.

Here is an excerpt of the story below about Bourdlais, a man who made headlines when he walked across the stage in May of 2008 to receive his diploma after being paralyzed in a 2006 auto accident. It was a story that was widely publicized throughout the area and the region by such media outlets as the Grand Rapids Press and TV9and10 News and statewide outlets like the Detroit Free Press.
Former Ferris State University football player and Bulldog alum Jim Bourdlais brought home gold medals in several categories during the third annual "Thunder In The Valley Games" held recently for disabled athletes.

Bourdlais, who sustained a spinal cord injury and was paralyzed during a 2006 car accident, captured first-place honors for his class in four events to go with one runner-up honor in the event held in early June on the campus of Saginaw Valley State University in University Center, Mich.

The former Bulldog defensive lineman took home the gold in the shot put, discus, javelin and archery while finishing second in the weight lifting category en route to national qualification status. Athletes were classed based on their level of injury.

Bourdlais threw the javelin 16.38 meters despite never picking up a javelin prior to the competition. He also posted top marks of 6.49 meters in the shot put and 14.55 meters in the discus with a top score of 486 in archery.

Since his accident, Bourdlais has made a habit of triumphing over adversity and beating otherwise long odds, including a walk across the stage of FSU's Jim Wink Arena to receive his degree in Criminal Justice from FSU in May 2008.

Bourdlais, who originally joined the Bulldog program as a freshman tight end in 2002, played in eight games for the Bulldogs during the 2004 season and posted a pair of tackles along with a pass breakup along the FSU defensive line. He later became a student assistant coach and valuable supporter following his accident.
For the complete story, visit the Ferris Athletics Web site, here.

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