Troy’s football program is mourning the tragic loss of Jadarius Garner, who passed away near his home town of Clarksdale, Mississippi on Thursday. Mississippi State Police have not released a cause of death at this time.
“This is a terrible tragedy and our thoughts and prayers go out to Jadarius’ family in this time of grief,” Troy football head coach Larry Blakeney said in a statement released by the school. “Jadarius was a well-respected member of our football team and his loss will be felt by all of us.”
Garner, a defensive end, played his second season with the program following a transfer from a junior college. According to a release from Troy, he appeared in all 12 games played by the Trojans this season. His performance this season was highlighted in Troy’s September 7 blowout of Savannah State. Garner led the Trojans with six tackles, including credit for two sacks and five solo tackles and he forced two fumbles. He earned Sun Belt Defensive Player of the Week honors for his performance.
“I wanna play well every game,” Garner said after that game. “I wanna be great.”
Garner was 20 years old.
UPDATE (10:43 p.m. ET): The Associated Press is reporting some awful details about Garner’s death. Mississippi Highway Patrol say Garner’s body was found on the side of U.S. Highway 61 in Boliver County after two cars had run him over. Garner was pronounced dead on the scene.