7-year-old cancer patient scores touchdown in Nebraska spring game
Ryan Soderlin, Associated Press
It will probably be remembered as one of the most heartwarming sports moments in 2013.
Facing a fourth-and-one on the last play of Nebraska's spring game, quarterback Taylor Martinez took the snap and handed off to a special member of the team, 7-year-old brain cancer patient Jack Hoffman. Wearing a Cornhusker helmet and jersey No. 22 after his favorite player, Rex Burkhead, Hoffman followed his blockers and ran 69 yards for the game's final score, then celebrated with the entire Nebraska team in the end zone.
“It was awesome," Hoffman told Omaha.com.
"Jack was pretty hard to beat," Nebraska coach Bo Pelini told ESPN.com.
This video by Nebraska Athletics shows Hoffman getting the play call prior to running onto the field.
This October 2012 video report by the Big Ten Network chronicles young Hoffman's battle with brain cancer, his special friendship with Burkhead and how Hoffman's courage inspired Burkhead to lead the Cornhuskers to an incredible comeback in a 2011 game against Ohio State.
The Huffington Post captured several tweets by members of the national media, who witnessed Hoffman's memorable touchdown run.
Hoffman and Burkhead have teamed up to raise awareness for cancer, according to his article in Husker Illustrated.
This video, produced by Nebraska Athletics, illustrates the special relationship between Hoffman, Burkhead and the Nebraska football program.
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