Wichita State forward Carl Hall has overcome a heart condition to be an integral part of a college basketball team that just advanced to the Sweet Sixteen. He has a long history of collapsing during games due to a condition known as neurocardiogenic syncope. At 18, he was told he couldn’t play basketball anymore.
Against long odds, he persevered.
Doug Gottlieb knew this history, and awkwardly shoehorned it in as TNT went to commercial break late in the Shockers’ win over Gonzaga in the interest of cleverness.
Admittedly, I’m sensitive to this issue. At age 10, I was diagnosed with aortic regurgitation and told sports would not be a part of my future. I was devastated. After a couple of years, I was re-evaluated and it was determined I was healthy enough to compete.
Since then, I’ve had to constantly monitor the situation. I get lightheaded and have to stop physical activity whenever the condition is exacerbated. It will never go away and, honestly, is a constant concern.
So perhaps what Gottlieb said was innocuous. But to me, and millions of others, it’s no laughing matter.