Former South Carolina Quarterback MVP Phil Petty Dies at 43 — Third Former Football Player to Die in Last 7 Days

Phil Petty/Getty Images

Another former football player has passed away in the span of just one week in the sporting world.

On Thursday, former South Carolina quarterback Phil Petty passed away at the age of 43.

The tragic news follows his recent appointment as an assistant coach at Gray Collegiate Academy in Columbia, South Carolina.

According to reports, Phil Petty died after a “brief stay in the hospital.” The cause of death has not yet been made public as of the time of this writing.

The State reported:

Petty was a three-year starter at quarterback under coach Lou Holtz at South Carolina and led the Gamecocks to back-to-back Outback Bowl victories against Ohio State during the 2000 and 2001 seasons. He was a finalist for the Johnny Unitas award, given to the top quarterback in the country, as a senior. Petty was MVP of the second Outback Bowl victory, throwing for 227 yards and two scores in the 31-28 win over the Buckeyes.

Petty signed with the Gamecocks under then-head coach Brad Scott. He starred at Boiling Springs High School in the Upstate and was the offensive MVP for the state’s 1996 Shrine Bowl team. He redshirted at USC in 1997, then backed up Anthony Wright at quarterback in 1998 before taking over as the starter in the 1999, 2000 and 2001 seasons. Lou Holtz became the head coach for South Carolina before the 1999 season.

Petty was was a major part in the program’s turnaround from the 1998 (1-10) and 1999 (0-11) seasons, as South Carolina finished 8-4 and 9-3 in 2000 and 2001, respectively.

During his final two seasons at USC, Petty completed 306-of-547 passes for 4,079 yards and 17 touchdowns while leading South Carolina. He threw for 2,110 yards in 2000, helping the Gamecocks to the 8-4 finish, which completed the greatest single-season turnaround in Division I-A history after an 0-11 campaign in 1999.

The Gamecocks released a statement following his passing, “Our hearts are heavy as we mourn the loss of a great Gamecock.”

“Phil Petty typified what a Gamecock truly is,” South Carolina athletic director Ray Tanner said in a statement Thursday, per the State. “A native South Carolinian, he was a fighter on the football field, a tremendous person off the field and beloved by all Gamecocks. He was a great friend to many and a wonderful dad and husband. My prayers go to his wife, Morgan, children, Sage and McCoy, and his many friends.”

This is the third incident involving a former football player who died in just a week.

The Gateway Pundit previously reported that former Notre Dame offensive lineman Paul Duncan, who was 35, died of a heart attack when he was out for a run in his neighborhood last Friday.

Paul Duncan

“Yesterday, Friday July 15th, Paul went into cardiac arrest while on a run in our neighborhood,” the bereaved wife announced. “Today he was pronounced brain dead. We will have a medical examination to understand cause of death.”

On Tuesday, another former Super Bowl-winning wide receiver and Heritage High School assistant athletic director Charles Johnson died at the age of 50, as reported by CBS17.

According to the outlet, Johnson’s cause of death has not yet been released.

Charles Johnson/Getty Images

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Jim Hᴏft is the founder and editor of The Gateway Pundit, one of the top conservative news outlets in America. Jim was awarded the Reed Irvine Accuracy in Media Award in 2013 and is the proud recipient of the Breitbart Award for Excellence in Online Journalism from the Americans for Prosperity Foundation in May 2016.

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