This Eighth-Grade Basketball Player Born With One Arm Is A Master Dunker

There's no one way to be an athlete.

Even those of us with two arms probably find it pretty hard to dunk a basketball, but Trashaun Willis is putting us all to shame. The Iowa eighth-grader was born with one arm, but he doesn't let that stop him from being a champion.

Willis, who is already 6-foot-3 and 180 pounds, is a quarterback and linebacker for his middle school football team, runs track, and also happens to be a star basketball player. During a recent game, Willis stole a pass and dunked the ball, immediately celebrating with his teammates. His team ended up winning the game, with Willis scoring 14 points.


"It was such a great feeling," the 14-year-old told MaxPreps of the moment. 

He told the Des Moines Register that he had tried unsuccessfully to dunk earlier in the game. "I had to try it again," he said. "I went up and got it. And on the video, you can see me jumping around and going to my teammates, even as the game was going on."

Even Willis' competition had to be impressed with his skills.

But this wasn't a one-time phenomenon. Willis told the Register that his first time dunking was a couple of weeks before. "It was great; we were all really excited," he said, "and the crowd was really loud — I just had a whole bunch of joy going through me."

He also dunked again in a later game, earning the attention of ESPN's Chris Hassel.

Willis told the Register that these were his first dunks in a game, but he's done it before with friends at the YMCA. "I'm used to getting looked at as, like, an underdog," he said. "So it just makes me perform harder and do better and try to do better than everyone else."

Willis is further proof that there's no one way to be an athlete.



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