College basketball players will be battling it out in the NCAA Division I men’s basketball tournament. But there’s one pair of twins who have already beaten the odds.
Caleb and Cody Martin were born one minute apart and have just completed one more step in their unlikely journey. They won the Mountain West Conference title, celebrating on senior night at the University of Nevada.
It’s a whole country and generation away from North Carolina, where they were raised by a single mom in a single-wide trailer.
Jenny Bennett with her twins Caleb and Cody Martin. Jenny Bennett
“I would do it all again,” said Jenny Bennett, their mom.
Bennett was involved in an interracial relationship as a teenager and, when she got pregnant, she was kicked out of the house. As she worked three jobs to support the kids, someone once burned a cross outside her home.
“The emotions, the feelings, you just don’t understand why. How can somebody be so mean?” she said. “You’re thinking what’s going to happen to your children when you’re not there to protect them from someone like this. It’s scary. It really is scary.”
Today, the Martin twins are among the best college players in the country, both potentially bound for the NBA. They passed on the chance to go pro last year, as they make a push for the big prize: an NCAA championship.
Both Caleb and Cody understand they are here, and given this opportunity, because of their Mom.
“She didn’t fold. It’s not in her,” Caleb Martin said. “That’s why we are who we are.”
“I don’t even know if they understand how proud I am of them,” Bennett said. “They’ve done great.”
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