Jordan McNair showed signs of a heatstroke before he collapsed during a May 29 University of Maryland football conditioning workout, according to Heather Dinich of ESPN.com.
According to the report, McNair experienced “extreme” exhaustion and had trouble standing during a set of 110-yard sprints. He also reportedly had a body temperature of 106 degrees before he succumbed to a reported heatstroke two weeks later while hospitalized. No official word of cause of death has been announced.
According to McNair’s family attorney, McNair had a seizure roughly 45 minutes after the workout began based on the medical records and the 9-1-1 call placed by the medical staff.
“Our preliminary investigation reveals there is an unexplained one-hour time period when nothing significant was done to avoid the complications of heatstroke,” the family attorney, Bill Murphy, said. “Although there is some evidence they allegedly tried to cool him down, he should have been iced immediately. He presented at the hospital with a temperature of 106, which means he was not cooled down.
“We’re very concerned about the unexplained one hour between the time of the seizure and hyperventilating that was observed by a coach, and what happened in that remaining hour before the EMT people were actually called. This points to an utter disregard of the health of this player, and we are extraordinarily concerned that the coaches did not react appropriately to his injury.”
The University of Maryland is conducting their own investigation to the handling of McNair before he was transported to the hospital. The findings are not expected to be announced until Sept. 15. Don Markus of the Baltimore Sun reports that the university placed several unidentified members of the athletic training staff on administrative leave on Friday in wake of the fallout from McNair’s death.
Maryland athletic director Damon Evans previously said McNair completed the entire workout before falling ill, however, witnesses told ESPN McNair had difficulty completing the workout and needed the help of two teammates to finish the 10th and final sprint.
Multiple anonymous players spoke to ESPN about what they saw while McNair was in distress. Players stated that trainers tried to walk McNair after he initially collapsed. One player said it was a “good distance” for a person in the state McNair was in and it was away from the athletic training building.
Another unnamed player said, “Jordan was obviously not in control of his body.”
“He was flopping all around,” that player added. “There were two trainers on either side of him bearing a lot of weight. They interlocked their legs with his in order to keep him standing.”
A third said it was clear that McNair was in distress and should have been something a medical professional would be able to recognize.
McNair was 19 at the time of his death.
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