Diagnosed with MS, Dallas Griffin Cycles for a Cure
"MS 150 Becomes Personal for Former UT Football Player"
April 18, 2012
Dallas Griffin, BBA '07, MBA '09, was among 13,000 who cycled from Houston to Austin in the BP MS 150 this past April 21-22. Griffin, 26, who was a standout offensive lineman for the Texas Longhorns, was diagnosed with MS during the summer of 2011. The Houston Chronicle profiled Griffin just before the April race. Here is an excerpt:
"Millions of thoughts run through your mind when they tell you what's going on," he said. "A tremendous amount of uncertainty washes over you. ... What you realize is that life, by its very nature, is uncertain. I'm not in control anymore. But the truth is, I never was. You just think you are."
As soon as Griffin returned to work, he broke the news to his colleagues. By the end of that week, two of them had decided to start an MS 150 team and get the company to back it. Some 55 riders will be carrying the Simmons banner on Griffin's behalf Saturday morning. While the outpouring of support didn't surprise him, it still moved and inspired him.
Not so long ago, Griffin admitted, "I could have never pictured myself doing this." But with MS a potential time bomb inside him, he can no longer imagine not doing it.
If so many others were going to give up their time to train and then spend a weekend bicycling to Austin, he was going to be there turning the crank with them. Given his new incarnation as a cyclist, Griffin is down to 180 pounds from a football high of 285.
He's not sure how quickly he'll get to Austin, but he's darn sure going to finish.
"I've got terrific friends," Griffin said. "They've rallied around me, just as my family has. My dad, my mother and my brother will be riding. ... I'm more than thrilled that Simmons has responded the way they have. You expect family to come together because they're obligated. My co-workers and my friends ... this created a huge pain for them.
"But there's one blessing to getting diagnosed with a rare disease. You suddenly have lots of people telling you they love you. I'm a really lucky guy."