Furman defensive tackle Bryce Stanfield collapsed on the field during a workout Wednesday morning in what is described as a “medical emergency.”
The 21-year-old was rushed to the hospital and placed on life support. He died on Friday, surrounded by friends and family. After his death, Furman President Dr. Elizabeth Davis conferred his Bachelor of Science degree in health sciences.
Furman coach Clay Hendrix released a statement expressing how “heartbroken” he was over the passing of his player.
We are heartbroken beyond measure with Bryce’s sudden passing and ask that everyone, first and foremost, lift up his parents, Fred and Teri Stanfield, and their family, in prayer on this day and in the days ahead.
There are so many more who are really hurting — namely Bryce’s teammates, coaches and staff, classmates, friends, and the entire Furman community and beyond. Bryce was an outstanding young man and an equally fine student, football player, and friend. He was so much a part of who we are as a program and school, and was pivotal in our success on the football field and through giving of his time in outreach to our community. In every sense he was the best representative we could have. His passing is one of the most difficult things Furman football has ever encountered, but our faith and so many wonderful memories Bryce provided us will help sustain us all in the days ahead.
“Stanfield was a two-time Southern Conference Academic Honor Roll selection. He served in Furman’s Heler Service Corps Men of Distinction, visited patients at Greenville Children’s Hospital and read to children at local schools,” the Associated Press reports.
“Bryce was a beautiful soul, a loving son, loyal friend, tremendous teammate, and great student,” said Furman Vice President for Intercollegiate Athletics Jason Donnelly. “We are grateful for the outpouring of love and prayers from our entire community. Bryce will be dearly missed but will be remembered in our hearts forever.”
A native of Acworth, Georgia, Stanfield had planned to become a dentist after graduation.
“[Stanfield] played all 13 games for Furman last fall and had 13 tackles and 2 1/2 sacks while helping the Paladins go 10-3 and win a Southern Conference championship,” the AP reports.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.