LaShawn Merritt might have won the race but the real victory Sunday in the men's 400 meters at the US Olympic trials belonged to Bryshon Nellum.
Nellum, a senior at USC, finished third in the event, behind Merritt and Tony McQuay, for a trip to the London Games -- something that was unthinkable in 2008 when Nellum was shot in the legs while leaving a Halloween party.
A high-school track phenom, Nellum was told he might never run competitively again after the shooting. Now, three surgeries and nearly four years later, he's an Olympian.
''I just put it all in God's hands. It's not my plan, it's his plan,'' Nellum said.
Nellum took a bullet to each thigh and another in the left hamstring during the shooting when he was just 19. Two gang members were sentenced last August to 15 years each in prison for the crime. Prosecutors said the men mistook the athlete for a rival gang member.
Just last year, Nellum underwent a third and surgery to remove the remaining bullet fragments in his ...