College Football

University of Maine football player dies after collapsing at practice

A University of Maine football player from Orange County, Virginia, died Tuesday after he collapsed during a preseason workout.

Darius Minor was an incoming freshman defensive back and a former standout at Orange County High School. He collapsed around 1:15 p.m., according to a university statement, 15 minutes into a "supervised light workout." Athletic training staff and emergency personnel were unable to revive him.


Minor was 18 years old.

"Words cannot express the grief we have following this tragic loss," Maine coach Joe Harasymiak said in a statement. "Our thoughts and prayers go out to Darius' family and friends during this terrible time."


Temperatures were in the low 80s Tuesday with close to 50 percent humidity when Minor collapsed. Players were wearing T-shirts and shorts during the workout, reported the Bangor Daily News.

Minor was a multisport athlete in high school. His sophomore year, he led the football team with eight interceptions but was sidelined his junior year with a knee injury.

He returned his senior season to lead the team with 59 catches and 12 touchdowns, according to the Daily Progress newspaper, and also handled the kicking duties. In the spring, he was the soccer team's leading scorer.

His college recruitment was slow going but picked up after he ran a 4.35-second 40-yard dash in a skills camp in North Carolina the summer before his senior year. Virginia Tech and James Madison offered him walk-on spots, according to the Daily Progress, but he went with Maine instead.

"They come from a similar background as me, and they feel like they have something to prove," he said at his commitment ceremony in February.

Minor is the second college football player to die during a workout this summer. Maryland redshirt freshman offensive lineman Jordan McNair collapsed on May 29 due to heat stroke, his family said. He died two weeks later on June 13.

First published in the Washington Post