Just days after he was offered the head coaching job at Texas A&M, former Murray State coach Billy Kennedy had been diagnosed with early onset Parkinson’s disease. Often starting with something as little as a twitching hand, Parkinson’s is no joke. His wife had been poking fun of the way his arm moved because she thought it was due to a shoulder injury. However, a neurologist discovered that it was something more. Parkinson’s is an incurable disease. Kennedy explained:
“I just threw it to the side and kept going. I tried to hide it. I thought I could keep going without anyone ever knowing a thing.”
A&M decided to put this off as an “undisclosed medical condition”, in order to protect Coach Kennedy’s privacy. Although the Aggies were picked in the pre-season to win the Big 12 conference, the three weeks that Kennedy had to take off seemed to be disastrous. That coupled with a few key injuries. He has since turned things around but they are nowhere near where they were projected to be, at only 12-8 overall.
There have been other famous people who have been diagnosed with Parkinson’s as well. Michael J. fox, and Muhammad Ali to name a few. Coach Bill Kennedy vows to get back to each and every individual who sent him letters and prayers throughout his struggle.