The family of Zach Hoffpauir is hoping some good can come out of tragedy.
Last Thursday morning, Zach Hoffpauir passed away at the age of 26. No cause of death for the former Stanford football and baseball player has been released. Hoffpauir’s father, though, stressed to Jon Wilner of the San Jose Mercury News that his son did not commit suicide.
Doug Hoffpauir also confirmed to Wilner that the family has donated Hoffpauir’s brain for concussion research. The younger Hoffpauir had previously publicly acknowledged that he had suffered several concussions during his football playing days. He had also battled depression, including a suicide attempt last year, as well as being diagnosed with Lyme disease.
The elder Hoffpauir explained to Wilner he’s not out to “get” football. He also heaped praise on Stanford for handling his son’s injuries.
Doug Hoffpauir emphasized that he’s a football fan and hopes research into head trauma can lead to a safe, long-lasting approach to the game.
“I’ve never been a guy that says you have to stop football because of concussions. It’s a rough sport.”
In addition, he complimented Stanford’s treatment of his son and its attentiveness to head trauma.
“If you have a concussion, that’s the place you want to be,” he said. “They were all over it. (Coach) David Shaw is crazy careful about that.
Hoffpauir was a member of the Stanford football team from 2012-14 and then again in 2016. In 2014, the defensive back earned All-Pac-12 honorable mention honors.
The Arizona native was also a member of the Cardinal baseball team while on The Farm. That 2015 season he didn’t play football, he played minor league baseball after being drafted in the 22nd round by the Arizona Diamondbacks.
Hoffpauir was recently hired as the defensive backs coach at Northern Colorado. The FCS school’s head coach is Ed McCaffrey, the son of Christian McCaffrey. Hoffpauir and the younger McCaffrey were best friends.