The first thing to say: Best wishes, Coach. We’re thinking of you.
We’re thinking of Bill Snyder, of course. He’s the football coach at K-State, and he revealed earlier this week that he has throat cancer. He has been the coach for a generation; it’s doubtful that anyone has ever done more for Manhattan and K-State.
He says he’s doing well with treatment at the KU Medical Center and the MD Anderson Cancer Center, and he expects treatment won’t get in the way of coaching this spring or next fall.
We certainly hope that’s true, and in fact we believe him. Cancer is a scary diagnosis, but survival and recovery are increasingly likely.
It’s tempting to say, as some already have, that The Great Man Himself will throttle cancer, as he has so many opposing teams. He will be tough, they say; he always wins at KU; he could coach up a juco surgeon. Etcetera etcetera.
The harder thing to say is that cancer is an indiscriminate, unsparing disease. Clearly, a positive attitude helps. But sometimes people who are winners and tough and upbeat die of the disease. It’s a roll of the dice. What really helps is early detection, treatment and healthy lifestyle choices.
Our sense is that, 20-hour workdays aside, Coach Snyder has all those factors working in his favor.