Football is an incredible game. Sometimes it’s so incredible, it’s unbelievable.
There are a lot of people who speak ill of football and speak against what it’s doing to society or what it’s doing to our humanity. Although, even in the last year, this sport has seen some dark times, like the suicide and murders in Kansas City, it has also seen some downright incredible moments, Like when the Sandy Hook Choir took the stage at the Super Bowl and Sang America the Beautiful. These moments inspire us to be better, inspire us to never let go of our dreams. The Nebraska Spring game this year, held such a moment.
Late in Nebraskas Red and White Spring game, 7 year old Jack Hoffman took the field to fulfill his dream to play football for Nebraska. Jack is a brain cancer patient, Jack was diagnosed with cancer in April 2011 and has had two surgeries. He’s now on a two-week break from a 60-week chemotherapy regimen.
On a 4th and 1 play, Jack (wearing a #22 jersey in place of Rex Burkhead) took a hand off and what happened next almost immediately filled the heart of everyone watching. Jack began to run to the left side of the field when Quarterback Taylor Martinez redirected him to a wall of blockers set up to the right. Jack burst through the line following his blockers as the entire stadium of 60,174 fans exploded with cheers and applause, supporting jack all the way down the field scoring a touchdown! Both benches emptied as the entire team lifted him up and celebrated Jack’s triumphant moment.
Although the sport of Football has had dark moments, it’s moments like these that give me hope for Humanity. Seeing a young boys’ dreams unfold and come true and watching a team of young men who are local celebrities help Jack’s dream come true makes me appreciate the dreams that are recognized by this sport. Although I’ve never been fond of Nebraska football, this was the classiest move I’ve seen by an entire program, the fans cheering him on, the players making sure he experienced the excitement of a game winning touchdown! Not only did they get him on the field, but they kept his Touchdown in the official box score and he was the leading rusher for the day. Keep on fighting Jack, keep on fighting!