Bedard "Spirit of the Game" Award
In 2008, Soccer Silicon Valley Community Foundation and the San Jose Earthquakes along with the Bedard Family established the Andrew Bedard Memorial "Spirit of the Game" Award. The award is given at the end of each MLS season to an Earthquakes player who takes a prominent, active role in the community while exemplifying the positive attitude of the late Andrew Bedard.
The Earthquakes aim to be champions not only on the pitch but off. Off the field, the club does its best to make fans proud by their service to the community, transcending what folks have become accustomed to with typical American sports stars. The club takes an active role in getting to know fans, coaching kids around the Bay Area, and supporting important causes such as the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society and Wounded Warrior Project with fundraisers. Our fans help foster and maintain that spirit among the players with this award.
The award is named for Andrew Bedard, a young Earthquakes fan who passed away at age 8 in 2004 and who was a fan of former Earthquakes goalkeeper Pat Onstad. Andrew was one of those happy children who lined the fence for autographs, but mostly just wanted to see Onstad, who, along with defenders Craig Waibel and Jeff Agoos, and other players and their wives, stepped up to support Andrew’s family after his sudden death from an aneurysm.
Andrew’s favorite position was in goal. Even though he was a very young player, he seemed to understand the position and kept his heart up during a trying season. During the fall 2003 season, he was on a team that never won a game and didn’t even score until most of the games had been played. Yet he worked very hard to keep the other teams from scoring. After a tough game, his dad asked him how he felt. Andrew’s reply was, “I feel great! It doesn’t matter what the score is. If you have a great attitude, you are a winner.”
Andrew embodied the true “Sprit of the Game” with his attitude. It is this attribute of soccer which extends beyond the competition on the pitch that we want to recognize in the “Spirit of the Game” award bestowed by the fans in Andrew’s name.
The Andrew Bedard Memorial Spirit of the Game Award is presented every year at SSVCF's Annual Dinner.
Previous Bedard Award Winners