During the first half of the Louisville Cardinals' NCAA tournament victory over Duke on Sunday, Kevin Ware suffered a gruesome open fracture of his right leg, and his teammates' first reaction was to recoil in horror. But fellow teammate Luke Hancock only stayed away for a moment before his faith moved him in to help.
According to USA Today, Hancock, a Cardinal forward, went to Ware lying on the floor in shock and took his hand, saying they would get through it together and that he would pray for him. Without waiting for a response from Ware, Hancock patted Ware's chest in comfort and prayed, "Lord, watch over us and let Kevin be OK during this tough time. The Lord does everything for a reason, and He will get us through this ..."
“I wouldn’t want to be alone in that situation, and I don’t think he wanted to be alone,” Hancock told the media. “I just thought if I could talk to him and tell him he’ll be all right, it might help.”
It did help, and more than Hancock could have dreamed. Ware said that Hancock's presence and prayers calmed his fears, helped him refocus, gave him hope and "touched his heart."
"I think it just galvanized everybody," Louisville athletic director Tom Jurich said. "It was the very first thing I noticed. To see Luke right there was just incredible."
Ware underwent surgery to repair the broken bone on Sunday. The bone was reset and a rod was inserted to stabilize it. Sports medicine director Fred Hina told the media Sunday night after the surgery that Ware is bound for a lengthy recovery since it was a weight-bearing bone that broke, but that Ware would play again.
"We're so afraid of failure. Sometimes it's a reflection on us, and we don't want to fail ourselves because if our kids fail, we fail."