Scott: Today, we’ve got a pretty special Play of the Week. It’s not just an amazing goal; it’s also an amazing story!
Check out Nico Calabria from Concord Carlisle High School in Massachusetts. He was born without a right leg but that didn’t keep him from scoring his first varsity goal.
Nico: No pity. No differences. I just want to be seen as an equal.
Scott: And now Nico’s play might be the most famous high school soccer goal ever. With more than 1.4 million views on YouTube, Nico is inspiring people around the world.
Nico: My disability doesn’t define who I am. My disability gives me a challenge every day.
Scott: Born without a right leg and hip, when he was just five, Nico decided that a traditional prosthetic leg was simply holding him back.
Nico: You can go the option of forearm crutches, which are they make you stick out heinously, but they also give you this opportunity to be as mobile and as free as I want to be. I can play soccer on my crutches. I can run – I can climb Kilimanjaro!
Scott: That’s right, he said Kilimanjaro! At 13, Nico became the first one-legged climber to reach the top of Africa’s highest mountain. He also skis, dives and loves volleyball.
Then there’s wrestling against two legged opponents. He finished third in the state in his weight class.
Nico pads his crutches for safety. The state athletic association ruled he could use them but Nico is quick to push back against anyone who suggests playing with crutches gives him some kind of competitive advantage.
Nico: I suggest they try it and then tell me if they think it’s an advantage or not, and then we can go from there.
Scott: This past summer, Nico made his debut for the U.S. Amputee Soccer Team, and now wants to take them to their World Cup.
Nico: I’ve got one leg. You get one life. Do what you will. And I’m not going to let the hand I was dealt in life dictate what my life is going to be.
Scott: I told you it was pretty awesome, right?
- Who is Nico Calabria?
- How did Nico’s parents raise him?
- Why did Nico decide not to use a prosthetic leg?
- What are some of Nico’s athletic accomplishments?
- What adjectives best describe Nico’s approach to life?
- How did Nico become a national figure?