Ted Agu, a student and defensive lineman at the University of California at Berkeley, passed away on Friday morning during a team training run.  The run was near Memorial Stadium, the football team’s home field.

Ted Agu started as a non-scholarship player under former head coach Jeff Tedford, earning a spot on the team.  Sonny Dykes, the school’s current head football coach, rewarded his determination and talent by making him a full scholarship player.  Dykes spoke about Ted Agu at a press conference Friday afternoon, “Ted was a very special young man. As a coach you have the opportunity to be around a lot of special kids, day in and day out, and he was a special young man. Just had a passion and energy for life that was contagious. He’ll be deeply missed. Our players loved him dearly, and he was a big part of our family”.

Also speaking at the press conference Friday afternoon was Dr. Casey Batten, a team physician.  Dr. Batten recounted the events leading up to Ted Agu’s death, saying that medical staff was monitoring Agu’s workout.  It was noticed that Agu was having difficulty during his workout and appeared unable to complete it.  The precautionary measure was taken to halt the workout, at which time, Dr. Batten said, “He was hydrating, he was responsive, he was talking”.  Dr. Batten said Agu never had any previous problems with workouts or practice during his time at Cal.

Ted Agu was moved by cart to a medical facility about 150 yards away as a further precaution.  Agu collapsed at the medical facility.  The use of an external defibrillator and what was called “high quality CPR” was performed.  Ted Agu was then transported to Berkeley, California’s Alta Bates Hospital, where he died.

Ted Agu Image from GoldenBearsSports Cal Berkeley Football Players dies during workout

Ted Agu (Image from GoldenBearsSports)

The Cal family is heartbroken” said school Athletic Director Sandy Barbour.  “There is no greater tragedy than to lose one of our incredibly bright and passionate young people far too soon” Barbour later added.

Ted Agu was majoring in Public Health and carried a 3.28 grade point average, earning him Pac-12 All-Academic second-team honors.  Stefano Bertozzi, the Dean of UC-Berkeley’s School of Public Health, issued this statement:  “Ted’s untimely death is a great shock; not only was he a star athlete on the Cal football team, but he was also a strong student with plans for medical school. Those who knew him have commented that despite having the impressive physicality of a football player, he had a charming warmth of character. Ted demonstrated strong leadership skills, serving as an informal peer adviser for incoming freshman football players. He was passionate about using the influence of football players and coaches to improve healthy behaviors among youth in our community and was planning to work with the School on a project related to this. He will long be remembered”.


 Cal Berkeley Football Players dies during workout