Furman defensive tackle Bryce Stanfield died at the age of 21 after suffering a medical emergency during a workout on Wednesday morning, the school announced. Stanfield collapsed at Paladin Stadium and was taken to a nearby hospital, where he was placed on life support.
Stanfield died on Friday, after a ceremony in which Furman President Dr. Elizabeth Davis conferred his Bachelor of Science degree in health sciences. Stanfield was surrounded by family and friends.
Furman head coach Clay Hendrix released a statement on Stanfield's passing. Hendrix spoke highly of Stanfield, a rising senior, as a leader on and off the field.
"We are heartbroken beyond measure with Bryce's sudden passing and ask that everyone, first and foremost, lift up his parents, Fred and Teri Stanfield, and their family, in prayer on this day and in the days ahead."
"There are so many more who are really hurting -- namely Bryce's teammates, coaches and staff, classmates, friends, and the entire Furman community and beyond. Bryce was an outstanding young man and an equally fine student, football player, and friend. He was so much a part of who we are as a program and school, and was pivotal in our success on the football field and through giving of his time in outreach to our community. In every sense he was the best representative we could have. His passing is one of the most difficult things Furman football has ever encountered, but our faith and so many wonderful memories Bryce provided us will help sustain us all in the days ahead."
Stanfield was a native of Acworth, Ga., and attended Harrison High School before joining the Paladins. Last season, Stanfield played in all 13 of the team's games and helped Furman capture a Southern Conference championship. Stanfield totaled 13 tackles, with 4.5 tackles for loss and 2.5 sacks.