On Wednesday, Sam Westmoreland, a freshman offensive lineman at Mississippi State University, was found dead at a Baptist church in Starkville, Mississippi just two days before his 19th birthday.

The cause of death remains unknown, and the Oktibbeha County Sheriff’s Office reported that they currently have “no reason to suspect foul play.”

Westmoreland had just started his college career and was planning to major in industrial technology.

The head football coach at MSU, Mike Leach, released a statement about the tragic passing of the young man.

“The Mississippi State Athletics Family is heartbroken by the sudden death of Sam Westmoreland,” Leach said. “Sam was a beloved son, brother and teammate, and a tremendous young man with a limitless future. He will always be remembered and deeply missed by everyone who know and loved him.”


“The entire MSU Family mourns as our thoughts and prayers go to the Westmoreland family. Our highest priority is the support of the Westmoreland family and our student-athletes during this troubling time,” added Leach.

John Cohen, the MSU athletics director, also commented on the 18-year-old’s tragic passing. “We are heartbroken by the sudden loss of Sam Westmoreland. Mississippi State is a family, and we are all mourning during this trying time. Our thoughts and prayers are with the Westmoreland family and everyone who knew and loved Sam.”

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