<
>

Pitt RB James Conner says he has been declared cancer-free

Pittsburgh running back James Conner said Monday he is cancer-free, six months after he was diagnosed with Hodgkin lymphoma.

Conner took to Twitter to share the good news:

Conner, a former ACC Player of the Year, finished his 12th and final chemotherapy treatment May 10. His cancer fight drew national attention. Conner received well wishes from around the country, and he made an appearance on "The Ellen DeGeneres Show" in April to share his story. He also threw out the first pitch at the Pirates' home opener.

Despite undergoing treatments, Conner still participated with the team during spring practice, wowing teammates and many others with his perseverance and determination.

Pittsburgh coach Pat Narduzzi issued a statement Monday, noting that Conner "fought cancer the same way he plays football: relentlessly and without surrender."

"He has inspired and touched so many people in how he has handled this challenge," Narduzzi said. "James is an incredibly special person, and I'm not even thinking about his football ability when I say that. Everyone at Pitt feels blessed to know him and we are tremendously thankful for the wonderful news he received today."

Throughout the ordeal, Conner and Pitt coach Narduzzi maintained that he would be ready to play in the season opener against Villanova on Sept. 3.

"Hopefully everything will look great and I'll be back on the field," Conner told DeGeneres. "What I want to do next is carry the ball again. I can't wait for the season to start. The goal [to play in the NFL] is still the same; it's just a little postponed. Everything's going to work out for the best. I believe it."