In December, Prep Rally brought you the inspiring story of Zach Hodskins, a one-handed basketball star for Georgia hoops powerhouse Alpharetta (Ga.) Milton School. Hodskins, a guard who has a preternatural touch from behind 3-point range, has excelled without any part of his left arm below the elbow, a birth defect that he refused to let end his prep basketball career.
Incredibly, Hodskins keeps improving and turning heads. In fact, on his 2013 summer tour with the AAU Tennessee Playmakers, Hodskins has impressed so much that he now finds himself with the option of playing at one of college basketball's best programs.
As confirmed by Hodskins' former coach David Boyd on Twitter, 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.
There has been no indication whether Hodskins would accept the offer or not, but simply having such an opportunity extended to him is an absolutely remarkable accomplishment. This isn't St. Leo's University or a decent Division III program.
This is Florida, winner of back-to-back national titles in the past decade and perennial Final Four contender. And there is little doubt that Hodskins' non-chalant approach to playing with one hand has only helped his crusade to play top level college basketball.
"When I'm out [on the court], I forget my arm isn't there and just play ball," Hodskins told the News-Herald of Northern Ohio. "Passion and love for the sport helps me overcome all obstacles. To this day I haven't come across anything I can't do."
It appears that Hodskins may have sealed the walk-on offer by excelling at the ScoutsFocus All American camp. Get Me Recruited, a hoops recruiting analysis and promotion site, called Hodskins the most impressive talent at the entire camp, citing his stunning ball handling ability and shockingly accurate passing. You can see his performance at the ScoutsFocus event in the video above. Remember, he's doing this with one hand.
While Hodskins has yet to receive a full Division I scholarship, the University of Alabama-Birmingham and Birmingham Southern have both reportedly been considering offering the guard a scholarship.
Whether they can top the opportunity Hodskins could have at Florida is another question entirely.