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USC’s Josh Shaw saves drowning nephew, suffers injuries

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The greatest football coach of all time, Vince Lombardi, once famously said, “There are three things that are important to every man in this locker room. His God, his family, and the Green Bay Packers. In that order.”

Josh Shaw doesn’t play for the Green Bay Packers. He is a member of the USC Trojans. However, Coach Lombardi would have been proud to know Shaw has his priorities in order.

The senior cornerback suffered a pair of high ankle sprains Saturday, according to

The injuries are secondary in this story. It’s how he suffered them. Jordan Moore of detailed the sequence of events which led to Shaw’s predicament.

“While attending a family social function at his cousin’s apartment in his hometown of Palmdale, Shaw looked on from a second floor balcony to the pool below and saw his 7-year-old nephew, who cannot swim, in distress without help nearby,” Moore wrote. “Shaw instinctively leaped off the balcony, landing painfully on the concrete below.

“He was able to crawl into the pool and ushered his nephew to safety.  Despite the intense pain in his legs, he was then able to grab the ladder and lift himself out of the pool with his upper body.”

Shaw’s return to the football field is unknown, but that’s secondary at this point. Shaw’s heroic act displays his character and exactly why he was named a captain by his teammates.

“I would do it again for whatever kid it was, it did not have to be my nephew,” Shaw told Moore.  “My ankles really hurt, but I am lucky to be surrounded by the best trainers and doctors in the world.  I am taking my rehab one day at a time, and I hope to be back on the field as soon as possible.”

The college football landscape is littered with stories that reflect poorly on student-athletes and the universities they represent. USC, on the other hand, can be proud to say Shaw is a member of its football team. Whether or not Shaw misses a significant amount of time this season, he’s already a winner.

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11 Responses to “USC’s Josh Shaw saves drowning nephew, suffers injuries”
  1. sfsugator says: Aug 25, 2014 7:33 PM

    What a warrior he is. A true leader of men. What a great act of heroism, and really a breath of fresh air this story is compared to all the bad garbage that is always written about. FightOn Josh!!

  2. tigers182 says: Aug 25, 2014 7:56 PM

    Good to hear an off-the-field issue in college football that’s positive for a change.

    Great story all around!

  3. gatorfan1 says: Aug 25, 2014 9:56 PM

    God works in mysterious ways!! If he was still at Florida he would be in Gainesville right now getting ready for school after being there all August for football.

    The Man Upstairs had a plan. Great Job Young Man!!

  4. laserw says: Aug 25, 2014 10:05 PM

    With so many self-centered attention whores in college and pro sports who think coming out being gay is a brave thing to do, well, let me tell you… this is a young man who has every priority right and is one of the shining examples of hope and pride that we should be talking about for years.

    I wish I were wealthy – I’d already be stroking checks to cover his tuition for all of his schooling – all the way through law or med school or whatever he wants to be.

    Amen to Josh for his bravery – stories like this make my day – I’m so proud and Josh’s parents should be so proud of the fine young man that they have raised!

    Kudos, Josh! May you have a life filled with success and love for what you just did.

  5. thekatman says: Aug 26, 2014 12:55 AM

    Wishing you a healthy and speedy recovery, Mr. SHAW.

  6. bigedefense says: Aug 26, 2014 2:27 AM


    You are exactly right! This young man is a bright light in a world that is getting dimmer each day. I too, if I had the money, would pay for this young mans college. There is nothing on Earth more precious than a child & a Mom & Dad will be able to hug theirs tonight because of Mr. Shaws heroism. It is SO refreshing to read stories like this instead of Joe Blow hitting a woman. Or Moe Shmo telling the world he is gay. There are good people in the world today, they just don’t get articles written about them. I am proud CFT went against the grain & wrote this article.

  7. longborer69 says: Aug 26, 2014 4:02 AM

    I hate USC football. I’m a Duck.

    But suppose Josh Shaw makes the field by season end, and his team makes the conference title game against us, and he intercepts a Mariota pass, I’ll be cheering and hoping he takes it for six.

    (We’ll crush them anyway, of course.)

  8. pnakotic says: Aug 26, 2014 6:44 AM

    This is a great story. An inspiring story. One that is a welcome change of pace from all the negativity we get in sports.

    This is not, however, the kind of story that begs for people to bash on athletes coming out as gay. There is no need to politicize this story. Let it be what it is, a great and inspirational story. You do a disservice to what Josh Shaw did by doing otherwise.

  9. dallashomer says: Aug 26, 2014 9:29 AM

    I don’t know if or where he projects to go in the nfl draft, but I hope my team takes him.

  10. ourenglishtea says: Aug 27, 2014 9:35 PM

    Just came out today that Shaw lied like a rug and that it is suspected the injuries were suffered in the course of a break-in. Just when I want to believe in the good and extraordinary that people are capable of-I’m slammed back to reality.

    Why do I bother?

  11. sephexxa says: Aug 28, 2014 8:54 AM

    Oh the irony…. A bright light for he world?! Guess again. What a pathetic liar.

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