Oregon Ducks golf coach Casey Martin fighting to save his leg

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  • Casey Martin
    Professional golfer

Oregon golf head coach Casey Martin has been fighting battles his entire life and always come out on top.

Now, he's in his greatest fight yet, trying to save his leg.

The Eugene native has suffered from a debilitating condition called Klippel-Trenaunay-Weber syndrome since birth, which allowed him to win a lawsuit to use a cart on the PGA Tour. One misstep could cause him a catastrophic injury.

His greatest fear became dangerously close to coming true when he fractured his right tibia in October 2019 by misjudging a step on a road under construction.

"I knew this day was coming," Martin told the Eugene Register Guard,  "And it's here."

His condition allowed him to successfully win a lawsuit with the PGA Tour to use a cart to minimize risk. 

"I remember when I was in my 20s talking to doctors that had looked at my leg, they were like, 'Look, you need to really guard against this happening... I was grateful that I was able to hold it off for a long time. I thought it would happen at 27, not 47. But it has happened. I'm just going to do everything in my power to save my leg."

The Ducks were led by assistant coach Brad Lanning for the remainder of the fall schedule.  The spring season got canceled by the NCAA due to the ongoing pandemic. 

Martin has gotten used to winning championships and battles. Beyond his Supreme Court decision, he won a state title at South Eugene High, won an NCAA championship at Stanford, an additional NCAA Championship coaching Oregon in 2016 and a Pac-12 Championship in 2017. 

"If I lose my leg, it would be an above-the-knee deal, and it's pretty risky for my situation anyway," Martin later told the Register Guard. "It's something that I've recognized could happen, but I would really rather not, if I could save it, because of the risks."

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Oregon Ducks golf coach Casey Martin fighting to save his leg originally appeared on NBC Sports Northwest