Miami creates special day for Make-A-Wish participant Carter Hucks (Video)

Carter Hucks (@CanesFootball)

Miami had a special guest at practice on Wednesday as it welcomed Charleston, S.C., third-grader Carter Hucks, a Make-A-Wish participant who is fighting a life-threatening disease.

Hucks will spend the next few days, including game day, with the Miami football program and his favorite player running back Duke Johnson. And so far, Miami has made the experience as special as possible.

It outfitted Hucks in custom pads, helmet and a jersey that had the No. 8 (Johnson’s number) and Hucks’ last name.

Miami’s band and cheerleaders welcomed Hucks onto the Miami practice field as he got to run through the inflatable helmet and smoke machines the players use on game days.

Hucks got to lead stretching, play catch with receiver Phillip Dorsett and catch passes from backup quarterback Jake Heaps.

He was later carried off the field courtesy of redshirt freshman offensive tackle Sunny Odogwu.

"Just a great day and hopefully a great three days coming up for he and his family," coach Al Golden said following practice. "We're excited to welcome him. He went to meetings. He got taped up, put pads on. We're excited for Carter and he's having a great day right now.

"He's entering a stage or a battle in his life where he needs this. He needs happy moments. He needs people supporting him and everything. I hope our kids get as much out of it as they are giving to him. In terms of appreciation and understanding where we are and keep perspective. I'm happy that he's with us this week for his sake. But I also think our guys are getting a lot from it as well."

Hucks’ father Derrick and mother Jessie accompanied him to Miami. Derrick Hucks told local TV station CBS-4 that his son had grown up playing football, but hadn’t been able to for the past year because of his illness.

Here's a YouTube video of Hucks displaying his skills at running back and he’s pretty darn good.

"Because of things with his health, I think being out here, seeing the guys running around, moving around it reminds him of the things he used to do," Derrick Hucks told the television station. "I think that's a big spirit booster for [Carter]. I think it reminds him after this procedure is done he'll be able to get back to being who he is.

"I was making a joke that hopefully by the time this whole procedure is over the next time he's in Coach Golden's office he's here to commit to playing his next four, five years at the University of Miami. This is a stepping stone in that direction with the whole procedure he's going to go through. I would love to see him out here. It's good to see him out here running around and what he could possibly be."

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