Midwestern State's Robert Grays dies from injury suffered while tackling

A Midwestern State football player died Tuesday from injuries he suffered while making a tackle in a game Saturday.

Cornerback Robert Grays, a sophomore from Houston, was injured with about 3½ minutes to go in the Mustangs' 35-13 home win over Texas A&M-Kingsville in Wichita Falls, Texas.

Midwestern State athletics department spokesman Trey Reed told ESPN that Grays was hospitalized in Wichita Falls on Saturday night and then flown to a hospital in Houston, where he died Tuesday. He was 19.

"Today we mourn the loss of one of our own," Midwestern State president Suzanne Shipley said in a statement released by the school on Wednesday morning. "Robert Grays died yesterday from critical injuries suffered in Saturday's game. I know you will join me in expressing the sincerest condolences of the MSU community to Robert's family and friends. Please keep them in your thoughts in the coming days.

"Robert touched many lives while attending the university, but perhaps he will be remembered best for his smile. He was an inspiration on and off the field to those around him, and he will be remembered with love and affection by his friends, classmates, coaches, and teammates."

Grays' family also released a statement thanking everyone for their "prayers, kind words, condolences and support."

About 700 people gathered Monday in support of Grays, with Midwestern State coach Bill Maskill saying that night, "He is a guy you'll love to be around, and as I walked up here, I want to make sure this is a support for him and his family."

Grays played at Fort Bend L.V. Hightower High School in Missouri City, Texas, before enrolling at Midwestern State, which was ranked 12th in the latest Division II poll.

He was the second college football player to die this week. College of Wooster offensive lineman Clayton Geib, 21, died Sunday, a day after the school said he was "complaining that he did not feel well" after the Fighting Scots' 38-20 victory over Ohio Wesleyan in Wooster, Ohio.

The Fighting Scots plan to honor Geib, from London, Ohio, by having only 10 players take the field for the first play of Saturday's game at Division III DePauw University.