Shane Van Boening is 97% deaf and the #1 ranked pool player in the world (according to AZBilliards.com). The 25-year-old attended public schools in South Dakota. His grandfather, Gary Bloomberg, who was a trick-shot artist. Van Boening does not use ASL but wears a hearing aid. He won the Predator World Tenball and the US Open 9-Ball Championship in 2007. In 2008, Van Boening made more than $147,000. So far, he’s got $34,750 in winnings this year. He credits his work ethic with his success: Van Boening practices as much as 15 hours a day.