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KU football commitment Andre Maloney passes away after suffering stroke on the field

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One minute, he was scoring a touchdown for the Shawnee Mission West High Vikings during a regular high school football game.

The next, he was fighting for his life in a Kansas City-area hospital, a battle that ended Friday evening, according to Shawnee Mission School District and KU officials.

That's what the final 24 hours of life were like for the KU football commitment, a 6-foot-2, 180-pound defensive back who committed to KU this summer and was the sixth-ranked player in Kansas.

Here's the school district release:

It is with great sadness that I share with you that the school district received notification this evening from Research Medical Center that Shawnee Mission West senior Andre Maloney has passed away from complications due to a stroke suffered Thursday night. Our thoughts and prayers are with Andre’s family, teammates, coaches, fellow students, and the SM West staff during this difficult time. The tremendous outpouring of concern expressed today by the our community has been greatly appreciated. We will continue to honor the family’s request this time to respect their privacy.

And here's a statement from KU coach Charlie Weis:

“We are absolutely devastated by the news of the passing of Andre Maloney,” Weis said. “Our hearts are broken at the loss of such an outstanding young man. Our thoughts and prayers are with his family, especially his mohter, Rosalita. We knew from the moment we met Andre just how special he was and he will never be forgotten. The Jayhawk family will forever hold Andre close to our hearts.”

Maloney's family released a statement earlier Friday explaining what happened and reports indicated that the young man spent much of the day in a vegetative state with no sign of recovery.

"During Thursday night's football game, Shawnee Mission West football player Andre Maloney suffered a stroke," the statement read. "He was transported to an area hospital for evaluation and treatment. He is currently receiving treatment in the intensive care unit at Research Medical Center. While the family greatly appreciates the concern, thoughts, and prayers of family, friends, and the community, they ask that the public and media respect their privacy at this time."

Free State High senior and fellow KU commitment Joe Dineen took to Twitter late Thursday night after hearing about Maloney's situation. KU coach Charlie Weis, who is not allowed to comment on recruits until they sign with Kansas, did the same Friday.

"A young man from a local HS football team was rushed to the hospital last night. Send some prayers his way! Also pray for his family&friends," Weis wrote early Friday afternoon. "Awful news! As a family guy and loving father, there are no words to describe my sorrow! GOD BLESS! Brings perspective to sports' importance."

Wrote Dineen: "There is so much competition in this league and we don't get along when we are playing, but when a player goes down, we come together. #sfl"

Just moments after hearing the news, Dineen wrote further: "Wow. RIP Andre. We had to put two people on him, just so he didn't burn our whole team. What a great player. I'm sure they have a football for you up there."

Comments

David Leathers 8 years, 11 months ago

I feel such sorrow for this family and for this amazing young kid. Praying for him and his family every step of the way. God bless this young man.

Amber Cottrell 8 years, 11 months ago

I've been reading he passed away this afternoon...Is that true? Stil very sad!

Matt Tait 8 years, 11 months ago

This comment was removed by the site staff for violation of the usage agreement.

Displayhawk 8 years, 11 months ago

So sorry to hear about this! My thoughts and prayers go out to his friends and family! He is ..... and will always be part of the Jayhawk family!

Lance Cheney 8 years, 11 months ago

How does Matt get a comment removed by the site? Nevertheless, this article is on ESPN.com, and there's posters on there saying that he's passed away. Whether he has or not, this is terrible, tragic news. Thoughts are with his family. I can't even imagine going through this...

Matt Tait 8 years, 11 months ago

It was in response to a comment that was removed itself so no need to leave mine up. Sad deal. Appreciate people being respectful.

Chris Bailey 8 years, 11 months ago

Having had to bury a child of my own I cannot imagine what they are feeling right now. I've been in the situation to remove life support and it is a gut wrenching and terribly tragic circumstance. They will need the love and support of their family and friends going forward. Football comes to a screeching halt with news like this and we see what really matters in our lives and how insignificant playing football becomes during these dark times. I love the game as much as anyone but it will be and should be the very last thing on anyone's mind right now. I truly hope KU has a moment of silence at tomorrow's game as it will undoubtedly be played. May God bless and watch over the family during this tragic time. Keep him forever close to your hearts, minds and your lives. God speed young Jayhawk! God Speed!

Phil Leister 8 years, 11 months ago

Looks like the KC Star is reporting that he will not recover. What a horribly tragic situation.

Andy Hess 8 years, 11 months ago

KCTV 5 said he has passed away. Terrible terrible news.

ahpersecoachingexperience 8 years, 11 months ago

This is truly sad but to but a positive spin on things, could there be a better way to go than right after scoring a touchdown?!?! Rock Chalk and rest in peace young man.

stm62 8 years, 11 months ago

As a VIKING and a JAYHAWK I would like to express my sympathies to the family.

mikehawk 8 years, 11 months ago

We just never know. Prayers to his family and friends. John 14:27

Kevin Randell 8 years, 11 months ago

My heart and prayers go out to his family.

namohcan_99 8 years, 11 months ago

So sad to hear this. Makes you wonder what could have caused the blood clot in someone so young. Thoughts and prayers go out to his friends and family.

Doug Cramer 8 years, 11 months ago

Very sad news...so sorry for his family and friends.

Micky Baker 8 years, 11 months ago

It seems that many people across the state of Kansas are sending well wishes to the family.

My thoughts and prayers will be with the family. They will need as much support as they can get.

JayHawkFanToo 8 years, 11 months ago

Always sad when a young life is taken. Our thoughts and prayer are with his family.

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