He may only have the use of one arm on the court, but that hasn't stopped Zach Hodskins, a one-handed basketball phenom, from excelling in the sport.
The inspiring teenager was born missing his left hand and forearm, but as a star on his high school basketball team in Alpharetta, Ga., Hodskins is known for his 3-point shooting skills and spot-on passing.
“He is remarkable,” his coach Van Keys told USA Today last year. “Watching him play would be amazing anyway because he’s that good, but when you consider what he’s overcome to be so good, it’s almost surreal.” (Watch NBA's coverage of Hodskins in the YouTube video above.)
That Hodskins has done so well as a high school basketball player is already extraordinary; but according to reports this week, the young man's career on the court may only just be beginning.
According to Yahoo! Sports, Hodskins is now being considered by colleges who want the talented young man on their teams. The news outlet writes:
Hodskins was offered a preferred walk-on offer by the University of Florida. Such an offer would guarantee Hodskins a spot on the team without a full scholarship, meaning that the Gators would have a one-handed player on their bench beginning with the 2014-15 season [...]
This is Florida, winner of back-to-back national titles in the past decade and perennial Final Four contender.
Hodskins' former coach David Boyd apparently confirmed the news via Twitter:
— David Boyd (@DavidBoydhoops) August 7, 2013
According to OnlyGators.com, a website covering University of Florida sports, Hodskins could potentially earn a full scholarship in the future if he joins the Gators as a preferred walk-on.
The University of Alabama-Birmingham and Birmingham Southern have also been considering the teen for their basketball teams, according to Yahoo! Sports. It is speculated that the two colleges will offer the teen a scholarship.
Hodskins has yet to speak publicly on the matter; but it seems safe to say that no matter where he ends up going, the teen will likely approach the game as he's always done: with dignity and courage.
“I know that people who don’t know me sleep on me when I walk on the court,” he told USA Today in 2012. “They don’t think I can play or they don’t know what to think, but it’s when I hit those first few shots or when I go by them is when they wake up. That’s when they start playing me hard. That’s what I love. I know I’ve just earned their respect. That’s all I want.”
For more on Hodskins, watch him show off his jaw-dropping skills on the court in this YouTube mashup: