Theodore “Boobie” Hammonds, a 23-year-old wide receiver at Warner University in Polk County, Fla., died Tuesday after collapsing during a non-contact drill at a practice.
"He had just done a route it was an excellent one they had just threw him the ball. He made it look easy and then Theo went to the sideline after he completed his route and then he collapsed. We had a certified athletic trainer right there on the spot, they began working on him right away," the school's president, Dr. David Hoag told the local ABC affiliate.
Members of the athletic training staff were on hand and immediately provided emergency care while the Polk EMS was called. Hammonds was rushed to the hospital where he passed away.
Wednesday, teammates, students and staff wore yellow ribbons on their shirts to honor Hammonds.
"He came to work, got his work done, great attitude always had a smile on his face never anything wrong, whenever he walked into a room just light up the room, his vibrance of him his personality is just ridiculous," said teammate Jonas Small.
Warner University released the following statement on the incident:
Warner University places the highest priority on the health and safety of its students and student-athletes. Certified athletic trainers were on hand at the time that the athlete collapsed and provided immediate emergency care. The cause of Theo's collapse and ultimate death are not currently known, and it would be inappropriate to speculate regarding the cause of death at this time.
On behalf of Warner University and our faculty, staff, coaches and trainers, we offer our deepest sympathies and heartfelt prayers to Theo's family, friends and teammates in this difficult and uncertain time. We are devastated by his passing. We have made a Warner University Care Team available to provide compassion, support and counseling to members of our community. We know that our students, coaches and staff are in the hearts, prayers and minds of this community, and we thank you for your continued love and support.