By Alonzo Small
Team IMPACT, a nonprofit organization whose mission is to help improve the quality of life for children battling life-threatening and chronic illnesses, partnered up with VCU to announce an inspirational signing by the VCU men’s basketball program.
On Thursday, Oct. 23, Morgan Vega, a 17-year-old Henrico, Virginia native currently battling cerebral palsy, got the ultimate birthday present, becoming the newest member of head coach Shaka Smart’s men’s basketball team. During a press conference in the Siegel Center media room, Vega was ceremoniously welcomed to the team by Smart and the 2014-15 men’s basketball roster alongside his mother Shelley. Vega’s 7-year-old brother Gabriel was also in attendance. Smart presented Vega with a National Letter of Intent. With his mother by his side, Vega signed the official document, making him a member of the No. 16th-ranked team in the country.
“One of the things we look for in recruiting is people with a lot of enthusiasm,” Smart said. “We want to have an enthusiastic program filled with enthusiastic people and I think we’ve found a very enthusiastic person.”
Vega, who was all smiles throughout the event, was presented his No. 35 jersey as well as VCU basketball apparel by his new extended family. He will get to attend VCU practices and home games at the Siegel Center this season.
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