California baseball player overcomes the odds, gets full scholarship from Tusculum

College Sports

YUBA CITY, Calif. (KTXL) — A Yuba City baseball player has been overcoming long odds most of his life. 

Kyle Williams Jr. was diagnosed with Crohn’s disease at age 11, and when his season was cut short this spring because of the pandemic, he overcame that too and landed a full scholarship. 

“It’s like dreams come true,” Williams said. “I’ve been waiting for this moment since whenever I could pick up a baseball, you know?”

Williams will be heading to Tusculum University.

“It’s surreal, you know. I don’t know how to put it into words,” he said. “It’s quite an accomplishment. I’m pretty proud of myself.”

After starting at River Valley High School in northern California, Williams went to Sierra College and played for just about two seasons, before the pandemic shut down his campaign. 

That, however, did not end his dream of landing a scholarship. 

“I’ve been ready since last year, I mean to go,” Williams said. “My game has a lot of improvement to do, but I’m ready to conquer a lot.”

Williams has been overcoming obstacles since he was diagnosed with Crohn’s disease. It’s a condition that inflames your digestive tract causing pain, severe diarrhea, fatigue and weight loss. 

“I was really sick. I mean, I lost 15, 20 pounds in about two weeks,” Williams said. “I felt like I was dying.” 

He said it took five years to adjust to all the needed changes in his life: surgeries, a new diet and a new way of life. 

“It just clicked, man,” Williams father, Kyle Williams Sr, said. “And he started training, started eating healthy and he started to grow up. It made him grow up a little faster than he expected.” 

Williams Jr. said that baseball taught him a lot, especially when it came to handling Crohn’s disease. 

“Baseball’s taught me a lot. It teaches you to come back each like it’s a new day. So, I mean, I took the same approach to Crohn’s, you know,” he said. “I’m going to tackle it. I’m going to conquer it. I’m going to not let it stop me to where I want to get.”


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