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Middle school football players execute life-changing play

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We end tonight with the football play of the month. It was executed with amazing precision by the Eagles. The Olivet Eagles. Steve Hartman has the play and the post-game analysis On the road. Between classes, they schemed and conspired. For weeks, the football players here at Olivet Middle School in Olivet, Michigan secretly planned their remarkable play. - Today gonna be go. This is a crazy idea. "No, everyone was in on it." "But the coaches didn't know anything about it." "We were like, going behind their back." I just never heard of a team coming up with a plan to NOT score. "It's just like to make someone's day, make someone's week. Just make them happy." The play - which was two plays, actually - happened at a home game earlier this month. The first part of their plan was to try to get as close to the goal line as possible without scoring, even if it meant taking a dive on the one-yard-line, which it did. The crowd was not happy. Quarterback Parker Smith: "Our kids knew 'Hey! We got this! This is our time! This is Keith's time!'" Keith Orr is the little kid in the brown jacket. He's learning disabled, struggles with boundaries, but in the sweetest possible way. Because of his special nature it's no surprise that Keith embraces his fellow football players. What is surprising is how they have embraced him. "We thought it would be cool do something for him. Because we really wanted to proof that he was part of our team and he meant a lot to us. Nothing can really explain getting a touchdown when you've never had one before." Which brings us to Part 2 of their play. If you didn't see Keith, it's because they were so protective of him. But he was in the middle of that rush. And when you crossed the goal line, what was that like? "Awesome!" "It was like 'Did he just scored a touchdown? Get your camera out!' Keith's parents Carrie and Jim almost missed the moment, but they got the significance. "Somebody's always going to have his back - from now until the day he graduates." She's right. When the football team decides you're cool, pretty much everyone follows suit. Today, Keith is a new kid, although by no means was he the only one who was profoundly changed. How was it like for you? "Once I saw him go in, I was smiling to here [pointing to his cheeks], a wide receiver Justice Miller. "Nothing can wipe that smile off my face." Why did it affect you so much? "Because he's never been cool or popular and he went from being, like, pretty much a nobody to making everyone's day." Justice admits the play wasn't his idea. I would have not really thought about that. He says it never crossed his mind to give Keith any glory. "I went from being somebody who mostly cared about myself and my friends to caring about everyone and trying to make everyone's day in everyone's life." Which may just make that touchdown the most successful football play of all time. Steve Hartman, On the road, in Alavet, Michigan

Video Details

Duration: 3 minutes and 21 seconds
Year: 2013
Country: United States
Language: English
Producer: ABC News
Director: ABC News
Views: 418
Posted by: rakosnicek on Dec 26, 2013

As part of our continuing series "On the Road," Steve Hartman meets the Olivet Eagles, a middle school football team who took a fledgling player under their wing and executed what may be the most successful play of all time.

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