Tennessee’s new basketball coach is a survivor. Literally.
Martin was playing professional basketball in Italy in 1997 when he began suffering weight loss and fatigue.
The diagnosis was non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma.
Martin told The St. Louis Post Dispatch last month he prayed “to let me see my son turn 18 years old.’’
Joshua Martin was 4 months old at the time. He’s 13 now.
Martin lost about 40 pounds during chemotherapy, but the cancer went into full remission. He was able to return to Purdue to finish his degree, after which coach Gene Keady hired him as an assistant in 2000.
Pearl is a spokesman for the OUTLIVE program, inspired by UT star Chris Lofton’s 2007 treatment and recovery from cancer.
Martin was a spokesman for the inaugural Purdue Center for Cancer Research Challenge in 2008, which raised $30,000. The Cuonzo Martin Challenge Award was established in his honor.