Ballou senior running back Jamal Speaks has been held off the football field for nearly two years due to being homeless.
After Speaks battled for weeks to gain his eligibility from the D.C. State Athletic Association (DCSAA) and the District of Columbia Interscholastic Athletic Association (DCIAA), he was able play in Ballou’s 29-26 victory over Theodore Roosevelt on Sept. 28.
Speaks played a key role in Ballou’s offense as he was rushing and receiving the ball. Speaks ran for a touchdown, while making a clutch catch during the final minutes of the game to set up the game-winning touchdown catch.
It’s been a journey for Speaks, who has seen enormous support from the public while generating a handful of media attention. Speaks was featured on the Monday edition of Good Morning America.
“I have been off the field so long,” Speaks told the Washington Post. “I guess I started to feel myself toward the end.”
Speaks next game will be on Friday night when Ballou faces Wilson High School.
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