Notre Dame senior linebacker Danny Spond decided to end his college football career as a result of severe migraines that had symptoms similar to that of a stroke. It was the second such migraine that Spond had suffered and the cause of them is unknown.
“My football playing career is over after suffering another paralyzing migraine early in fall camp,” said Spond in a statement released Tuesday. “I’ve received the best medical treatment and guidance possible. Unfortunately, an exact cause of these migraines remains undetermined, and in order to assure my overall well-being, I’m forced to walk away from the game with an extremely heavy heart.”
"Hemiplegic migraines are a rare form of headache that present with temporary stroke-like symptoms, such as weakness and slurred speech," Notre Dame head football team physician Dr. Jennifer Malcolm said in a statement. "Danny has suffered from a series of these migraines, but with medication, rehabilitation and a positive attitude he should avoid any long-term consequences. As there are no fully reliable predictors of hemiplegic migraines and ultimate prevention is extremely challenging, we fully support Danny."
Spond thanked his fans for the support via twitter. "I am overwhelmed with the amount of love and support I have received from all you this past week, I can not thank you enough. This has been the toughest time of my life and you have all been so incredible for me and my family sincerely I thank you from the bottom of my heart," the former linebacker wrote.
The decision to end his career now is sad for such a young talent, but Spond still trusts in God's plan in his life.
"God bless each and everyone of you, and just remember to always trust in Gods plan whatever it may be. I'm trusting and he will provide," he tweeted later.
Spond started 11 games last year for the 12-1 Notre Dame, notching 39 total tackles, including one for a loss, to go with an interception, three break-ups and four passes defended.
After Spond suffered the first migraine last season he had to undergo treatment to learn how to walk again. Spond recovered well in two months and gave thanks to God.
“So I was petrified…relying on Christ quite a bit. But through His grace, everyone’s prayers and the [help of] the best doctors around, I pulled through. [The doctors] really helped me learn what this was, and be able to treat it each and every day now.” Spond said.
In his tweeter account, he also writes that "I live for the Lord and to glorify him!"
Spond will remain in the team for the 2013 season and will serve as a student-coach.