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New video: Seven-year-old stars in Husker gameTell North Platte what you think
 
Photo by Huskers.com
Hoffman earned the game ball for his performance from Coach Bo Pelini.

For one play during Nebraska’s spring game, a 7-year-old boy made a shambles of the Blackshirt defense.

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Jack Hoffman, who was diagnosed with brain cancer in April 2011, took the field Saturday during the Husker spring game. He took a hand off from quarterback Taylor Martinez and scampered 69 yards into the end zone.

He wore a small Rex Burkhead jersey.



See a video of Hoffman's touchdown run at the lower right of the Bulletin's front page.



Nebraska’s entire team followed Hoffman and celebrated the score while a crowd of 60,174 cheered.

Hoffman hails from Atkinson, Neb. He has had two surgeries and is undergoing 60 weeks of chemotherapy, according to a lengthy report that was broadcast repeatedly on ESPN.

Husker running back star Rex Burkhead befriended Hoffman last year and became the captain of Hoffman’s support network, which is known as "Team Jack."

According to the ESPN report, football operations director Jeff Jamrog and fullback C.J. Zimmerer came up with the idea to get Jack involved in the spring game at the 11th hour. The Hoffmans learned the day before the game that the Huskers had a special play planned.

The Red team defeated the White team in the annual spring game, 30-21. Martinez was 8-10 passing for 105 yards for the Reds.

Husker reporter Randy York said Jack received the game ball inside the doors of the postgame locker room and the Huskers shared a spiritual moment.

Coach Bo Pelini and his team went to a knee, and Pelini held a player’s hand on the left and a 7-year-old’s hand on the right.

Jack, his dad, plus a friend and his dad, had dinner with Burkhead and his parents Rick and Robyn on Saturday night, then drove 3½ hours back to Atkinson, Young reported.

Jack's father Andy, an attorney, told Young that the weekend transitioned Sunday to church and reflection for a quiet kid to get back to his normal routine in small-town America.

Team Jack has raised more than $300,000 in donations, Young said.

For the complete Huskers.com report, including more videos and information about Team Jack, click HERE.


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The North Platte Bulletin - Published 4/6/2013
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