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Victim in alleged Philip Nelson assault responds to ‘thumbs up’ command

Isaac Kolatad

For the second time in less than a week, there’s some positive news on the Isaac Kolstad front.

According to the Minneapolis Star Tribune, the former Div. III football player responded to verbal commands from his neurosurgeons to give them the “thumbs up” sign. It’s the first time since Kolstad went into a coma following a savage beating three weeks ago that he’s responded to verbal commands.

Late last week, the family wrote on its blog that the swelling in Kolstad’s brain “has decreased even more and we are told by his physicians we are now ‘out of the woods’ for needing additional brain surgeries to repair damage from the injuries or other post-operative complications he was at risk for, but thankfully avoided.”

That glimmer of hope came a week after the family released a dire statement confirming that the 24-year-old Kolstad, who is married and has a young daughter, was on life support and had a portion of his brain removed after allegedly being kicked in the head repeatedly during an assault.

In mid-May, now-former Rutgers quarterback Philip Nelson was arrested in connection to what the vicious assault outside of a Mankato, Minn., bar. Nelson was ultimately charged with first- and third-degree assault in an incident that left Kolstad (pictured), hospitalized and fighting for his life. Another man is facing charges as well.

Nelson, who transferred to Rutgers from Minnesota earlier this offseason, was subsequently dismissed from the Scarlet Knights football program.

We’ve said it before and we’ll continue saying it as long as the situation warrants: while Kolstad lays in a hospital fighting for his life, Nelson is free on a $20,000 bond.

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8 Responses to “Victim in alleged Philip Nelson assault responds to ‘thumbs up’ command”
  1. dhardy8207 says: Jun 4, 2014 8:28 AM

    Thank God this young man is showing some signs of improvement. The chances of surviving this without some physical limitations is slim, but hopefully he’ll still be able to watch his children grow up and be able to be an active part of their lives….

    My continued prayers go up for this young man and his family…

  2. seminolez says: Jun 4, 2014 8:46 AM

    he’s gonna sign up for a lawsuit about football concussions as soon as he is physically able

  3. dhardy8207 says: Jun 4, 2014 9:30 AM

    ^^^^ Wow you must lead a miserable life!!^^^
    Hope that low blow there made you feel better about yourself!!

  4. raiderufan says: Jun 4, 2014 9:47 AM

    I really hope that baby gets to be held by her Daddy again…as a father my second biggest fear is not being there when they need me.

    Thoughts are with this guy and his family. Stay strong and fight my man!

  5. jonat0328 says: Jun 4, 2014 11:33 AM

    Seminolez – think before you show the internet world how stupid you are.

  6. sportsguy3434 says: Jun 4, 2014 7:22 PM

    And still people give a thumbs down for some of the posts wishing him luck

  7. wheezerswin says: Jun 4, 2014 9:42 PM

    Hopefully he makes a great recovery. That said just because the victim is doing better should not mean they lock away the punks involved. Their lives should forever be in ruin.

  8. bornahawker says: Jun 5, 2014 12:54 AM

    Boy better learn how to defend himself. Don’t look now! It a NANNY STATE! Boys will be girls

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