Former Arkansas football player Mitch Petrus died on Thursday night after suffering a heat-related illness. He was 32 years old.
According to reporting from Arkansas Online, the county coroner, Gerone Hobbs, said Petrus reported feeling sick after working outside all day and in his family’s shop on Thursday. The official cause of his death is listed as heat stroke.
Temperatures on Thursday in Arkansas — and in Lonoke County, where he was working in his family’s shop — reached the mid 90s. A heat advisory was in effect for much of the state, with the heat index surpassing 100 degrees. There’s a heat advisory in place again for much of Arkansas on Friday.
An Arkansas native, Petrus played at the University of Arkansas from 2006-09. He originally joined the program as a tight end, but switched to offensive line, where he finished his career and earned All-SEC honors. In 2010, the New York Giants drafted him in the fifth round with the 147th overall pick. He was with the Giants from 2010-12 before stints with the New England Patriots and Tennessee Titans in 2012, before capping his professional playing career at just 25 years old.