Chicago high school football player dies after hit on game’s final play

Friday October 23rd, 2015

A Chicago high school football player died Friday after an injury sustained during a game on Thursday evening, the seventh high school football death this fall.

Andre Smith, 17, was hit on the final play of Bogan High School’s game against Chicago Vocational and died at 6:10 a.m. Friday, according to the Cook County medical examiners’s office.

Relatives told ABC Chicago that Smith had brain swelling.

“It was a kick return play,” stadium announcer Jimmy Smith said, according to the Chicago Sun Times. “[Smith] was running and a guy blocked him, hit him pretty good and that was it. He went down and he got back up and walk backed to the visitor’s side of the field.”

An ambulance was then called, and Andre Smith “passed out” shortly after.

“For all of us at Chicago Public Schools, our hearts are heavy and saddened this morning to learn that one of our student athletes at Bogan High School has passed away,” the school district said in a statement on Friday. “CPS grief counselors are on-site at Bogan to provide counseling for our students. We ask that you respect the privacy of the student's family and keep them in your thoughts and prayers.”

Bogan lost the game 78–22, according to the league website.

Update: Saturday, the Illinois High School Association released a statement in regards to Smith’s death: 

- Kenny Ducey

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