WACO -- Sad news came out of Waco today as the basketball career of ex-Baylor center Isaiah Austin ended after he was disgnosed with Marfan syndrome, a career-ending medical condition.
The condition was revealed during genetic testing as part of the preparation for Thursday's NBA Draft showed that Austin suffers from Marfan syndrome.
“This is devastating news, but Isaiah has the best support system anyone could ask for and he knows that all of Baylor Nation is behind him,” Baylor coach Scott Drew said. “His health is the most important thing.
"And while it’s extremely sad that he won’t be able to play in the NBA, our hope is that he’ll return to Baylor to complete his degree and serve as a coach in our program.”
A 7-1, 225-pounder from Arlington Grace Prep Academy, Austin is totally blind in his right eye due to when he was hit in that eye some eight years ago while playing baseball. After four surgeries, doctors couldn't save Austin's eye.
However, Austin went on to prosper and became a McDonald's All-American, led Grace to two state titles, helped Baylor win the NIT championship in 2013, and to a berth in the NCAA Sweet 16 this past season when he hed the Big 12 in blocked shots with 119.
The cause of Marfan syndrome is from a genetic mutation which leads to problems in connective tissues throughout a person's body. An aspect of Marfan syndrome is aortic enlargement, which can be life-threatening.
-- Dwain Price
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