Kenechi Udeze, defensive end for the Minnesota Vikings, retired today (July 30th). He had only been in the NFL since 2004, when he was drafted in the first round by Minnesota. For most people, if you retire within five years of entering the league, you have failed. For Kenechi, however, being alive this year was a tremendous victory. He was diagnosed with leukemia in February of 2008, and spent the entire year battling through chemo and treatment. After finishing up treatment, he went right to work at his alma-mater USC. He was all set to come back in time for training camp this week, but neuropathy in his feet forced him to hang up his cleats. This guy is the definition of man. He is a symbol for enduring hardships, and working to do what you love. I hope the Vikings have a spot for him in their front office or on their sideline coaching staff. He was a great player, and has great spirit. In this world of crazy athletes behaving like shitheads, Udeze stands above the pack.
Kenechi, you are officially the most badass athlete of the year. Even cancer fears you. Good luck.