The University of Maine confirmed on Tuesday evening that former Orange County High School football player Darius Minor collapsed and died during a preseason workout.
“Words cannot express the grief we have following this tragic loss,” Maine head football coach Joe Harasymiak said in Tuesday’s press release. “Our thoughts and prayers go out to Darius’ family and friends during this terrible time.”
According to the release, Minor, 18, of Locust Grove, was one of 17 first-year athletes taking part in freshman workouts when he collapsed on the field at approximately 1:15 p.m., 15 minutes into a supervised workout session.
According to a story in the Bangor Daily News, it was humid Tuesday in Orono, Maine, with temperatures in the low 80s, and the players were in shorts and T-shirts when Minor collapsed.
Maine’s athletic training staff and local first responders were unable to resuscitate him. Cause of death was unknown as of Tuesday night.
Minor, a first-team All-Central Virginia wide receiver and second-team defensive back, signed with Maine in February. He snagged eight interceptions as a sophomore at Orange County, but his recruitment was interrupted by a knee injury, which cost him his junior season.
Interest picked back up the summer before his senior season when he clocked a 4.38-second 40-yard dash at a Rivals camp in North Carolina. Virginia Tech and JMU offered walk-on spots, but Minor chose the Black Bears because of their mentality.
“They play with a chip on their shoulder,” Minor said in February. “They come from a similar background as me, and they feel like they have something to prove.”
Minor went to Maine as a defensive back, but as a senior at OCHS, he led the Hornets with 59 catches for 765 yards and 12 touchdowns. He also handled the football team’s kicking duties, and in the spring, he was the varsity boys soccer team’s leading scorer.