Beautiful scene as player scores first basket after brain injury

Five years ago, a car accident put Indiana high school basketball star Josh Speidel in a coma and left him with a traumatic brain injury.

Before the accident, the 6-foot-7 Speidel was a 3-star recruit committed to play in college at Vermont.

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Instead of competing for playing time in Burlington, Speidel was left trying to re-learn how to walk, read and talk, according to the Burlington Free Press.

It was only after an incredible recovery that Speidel was able to enroll at Vermont, with a scholarship still waiting for him.

Speidel became part of the basketball team, but didn’t appear in any games. It was his dream to change that, however improbable it might be.

The basket was the result of a trade where Albany was allowed a free basket after tip-off, followed by a possession where every member of the Catamounts touched the ball until it reached a driving Speidel for a lay-up.

NCAA basketballer Josh Speidel scored the first basket of his college career for Vermont, five years after a car crash left him in a coma with an acquired brain injury. Pictures: NCAA/America East

“I'll be overblown with emotion, gratitude, finally realising that I'm out there,” Speidel said, according to WTHR.

“College basketball, my dream — I'm doing it.”

The basket isn’t the only inspiring part of Speidel’s story.

Per WTHR, the student who doctors said would not be able to reach beyond a fourth-grade reading level will graduate from Vermont in May with a 3.4 GPA.

With his individualised degree in education, Speidel wants to work with children through sports.

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