Golf is a game measured by distance. Inches separate champions. It starts with a drive.
For Ball State golfer James Blackwell, one drive was nearly the end. Inches separated life from death.
"It could have very easily been the end," Blackwell said.
After nearly eight months of rehabilitation, doctor visits and even learning to play golf again with one hand, Blackwell slowly returned to the game he loved.
"Golf was the farthest thing from my mind," Blackwell said. "At the time, I could feel a really weird, cold feeling in my hand. I didn't think I'd be able to do much competitively."
Ball State Sports Link has the exclusive story on Blackwell's near-fatal accident in Western New York and how, at one point, he thought he would never play golf again.
A game measured by distance, but defined by staying the course. A course which eventually led to Ball State.
"Realistically for a program like us, we wouldn't have been looked at from his standpoint as heavily as we were," Ball State head coach Mike Fleck said. "I don't look at it from a standpoint that he lost time when he was younger. This time we have now goes pretty fast."
In life, just as in golf, staying the course through the rough can be rewarding. Life is passing. To seize it, we must keep ourselves focused on the present. For now, Blackwell's focus is on Ball State.
"You build toward the future, but we're in the now," Blackwell said. "I have a better appreciation for the now. We're in the now and go from there."
Produced by Aaron Van Auken, with Andrew Bultememeier, Brad Dailey and Ryan Bickford.
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