The NBA dream has come to an end for former Baylor center Isaiah Austin. ESPN reported Sunday that Austin has been diagnosed with Marfan syndrome and will not be able to continue his basketball career.
"They said I wouldn't be able to play basketball anymore at a competitive level," Austin told ESPN's Holly Rowe. "They found the gene in my blood sample. They told me that my arteries in my heart are enlarged and that if I overwork myself and push too hard that my heart could rupture."
The Marfan Foundation website describes Marfan syndrome as a genetic disorder that affects the body's connective tissue. Because connective tissue is found throughout the body, Marfan syndrome can affect many parts of the body, including the heart and blood vessels, bones and joints, eyes, skin, and lungs.
Austin, who was projected as a late first-round pick had already overcome adversity in his basketball career. Austin has been blind in his right eye since he was 16 years old due to a retinal detachment and four consecutive surgeries according to ABC News.
Austin has gotten loads of support from fans and family alike. Even former Baylor quarterback Robert Griffin III offered some support through Twitter.
"Please send up a prayer for @IsaiahAustin who was diagnosed with a career-ending medical condition. Great Player & better person"
Austin's former coach Scott Drew also offered support in a statement posted on the Baylor Athletics website.
"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."
Despite the devastating news, Austin has seemed up beat posting positive messages on Twitter. On Sunday, Austin posted the following message on his Twitter page.
"Words can't explain how thankful I am for the time I had to play this wonderful sport. It changed my life forever. #NewBeginnings."
Austin also tweeted a large thank you to those who have shown him support.
"I would love to thank EVERYONE who has reached out to me. Toughest days of my life. But not the last! Life goes on. GOD IS STILL GREAT!"