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Plane crash survivor, Michigan commit Austin Hatch granted additional year of high school eligibility

Sep 5, 2012, 2:42 PM EDT

ISHSAA

The Indiana High School Athletic Association has granted Michigan commit Austin Hatch an additional year of high school eligibility, just over 14 months after he was the only survivor of a plane crash that killed his father and step-mother, WANE-TV is reporting.

Hatch’s injuries from the crash in June 2011 were so severe that doctors needed to put him in a medically induced coma, but he has since made a remarkable recovery and plans to play basketball for Canterbury (Ind.) this upcoming season and, with this waiver, next year as well.

The waiver, which is unique if not unprecedented, ultimately grants Hatch the equivalent of a “redshirt year” for the season he missed recovering from the crash.

Hatch now reclassifies to 2014 and instead of signing with Michigan this fall, will do so in the fall of 2014.

Prior to the accident, he averaged over 23 points and nine rebounds per game as a sophomore.  He reportedly chose Michigan over Notre Dame and Virginia.

According to WANE-TV, Michigan has pledged to honor Hatch’s scholarship offer, regardless of the upcoming circumstances, meaning he will be a Wolverine for the start of the 2014-15 season.

Michigan finished this past season with an overall record of 24-10, including 13-5 in the Big Ten. The Wolverines’ season came to an end with a loss to Ohio in the NCAA tournament.

Daniel Martin is a writer and editor at JohnnyJungle.com, covering St. John’s. You can find him on Twitter:@DanielJMartin_

  1. takingbovadasmoney - Sep 5, 2012 at 3:02 PM

    Nice to see Michigan honor their offer to the young man. Hope he is able to fully recover.

  2. seanb20124 - Sep 5, 2012 at 5:38 PM

    Scholarship is being honored, but no way it is a bball one if he can’t play

  3. florida727 - Sep 7, 2012 at 10:54 AM

    This is good news and the right thing to do on all fronts. Have to applaud the IHSAA for making the right choice in granting him another year of high school ball, and continue the clapping for Michigan for honoring their commitment. Sometimes schools, because of their win-at-all-costs mentality, take the easy way out. Regardless of his performance, Michigan did the right thing. I’m not a Michigan fan, but I’ll be rooting for their decision to pay dividends for them too. They deserve it after choosing to stand by Austin. Good luck to all.

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