ORLANDO, Fla. (WTOC) - Last season, redshirt junior offensive lineman Drew Wilson was forced to sit home due to an eye injury while the Eagles won the Camellia Bowl.
This year, he's helping lead the Eagles to Orlando and earning the National Comeback Player of the Year Award along the way.
Wilson missed all of last season after suffering a detached retina in his right eye, which required four surgeries to repair.
He's now legally blind in that eye, and wears sunglasses due to sensitivity to light.
But despite that, Wilson has battled back to a starting spot at right tackle and earned the Comeback Player of the Year award.
After the injury he considered quitting football and knows there are still risks to his eyesight by continuing to play, though they're minimal.
He says this season has brought the joy of football back into his life and his comeback has made it all the more special.
"You really don't worry about it when you put on a helmet and you have your brothers to your left and your right. You don't have no worries. You just want to make them proud and you want to do right by them. it's special,” Wilson said.
"Being able to come back the way he did, man.... he just exemplifies what the Georgia Southern man is about. I’m just so happy for him and his teammates,” head coach Chad Lunsford said.
Wilson will be starting at right tackle for the Eagles Saturday when they take on the Liberty Flames in Orlando.