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Having shed his crutches and begun shooting again, Kevin Ware targets October return

Jeff Eisenberg
The Dagger

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Kevin Ware (Getty Images)

Two months removed from his gruesome broken leg in the first half of Louisville's Elite Eight victory over Duke, guard Kevin Ware's recovery seems to be going as well as could possibly be expected.

The rising junior tweeted over the weekend that he has shed his cast and his crutches and is feeling stronger every day. Ware has even been spotted in Louisville's practice gym shooting jump shots, WDRB.com's Eric Crawford reported Monday night.

"I'm standing on my two feet on my own again now," Ware tweeted over the weekend.

It will be a while still before Ware can run or cut or get full lift on his jumper, but he wrote that his goal is to have made a full recovery by October. That seems a bit ambitious since only seven months will have elapsed since the injury, but Ware's perseverance and spirit in the wake of the injury should serve as reminders not to doubt him.

If Ware ever gets discouraged by his recovery plateauing or the challenges of daily rehab, he can find inspiration in the stories of two other former college athletes whose compound fractures also caused teammates and coaches to recoil in horror.

Doctors weren't sure former Texas A&M guard Derrick Roland would ever play again after his 2009 injury, but he was healthy enough to play in pick-up games eight months after his injury and has since played professionally in South America and Europe. Ex-Michigan State running back Tyrell Dortch said doctors told him he was risking ending up in a wheelchair if he played football again after fracturing his right leg in two places in 2001, but he eventually became a co-captain and key contributor for two full seasons.

"He's going to have a lot of doubts, a lot of 'why me's' and a lot of feeling sorry for himself," Dortch said about Ware the day after the Louisville guard's injury, "but if he's mentally tough, he can get back to his playing form."

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