BRENHAM, Texas—A Central Texas high school football player is hospitalized in intensive care after suffering a stroke.
Senior Brenham defensive back and receiver Justin Davis is recovering from surgeries to ease pressure from brain swelling. Brenham athletic director and football coach Glen West said Davis is in critical condition at St. Joseph Hospital in Bryan.
West said Davis had reported feeling ill about a half-hour after practice Wednesday. After basic tests for a concussion proved negative, Davis said he felt better and went into a team meeting.
His condition quickly worsened, however, and he was taken to a Brenham hospital before going to Bryan 35 miles away. West said the diagnosis was a stroke caused by a blood clot in his carotid artery, a rarity in a young person.
Doctors told West that the odds are over one-in-a-million that a 17-year old suffer this type of stroke.
Davis is entering his senior year as a starting defensive back and wide receiver for the Cubs. He was an All-District defensive back in 2011 and as a wide receiver, caught five passes—one for a touchdown in the Cubs scrimmage with Manvel this past Friday. According to rivals.com, Davis is being recruited by Arizona St., New Mexico St., Texas Tech and Utah. He is also the starting center for the Cubs district-champion basketball team.
Local residents joined some team members at an emotional prayer service Thursday night.
One of Davis’s friends said he complained of a headache after practice.
“And then he stood up and couldn’t control anything in his left side,” said Garrett Altman, who plays center for the Cubs.
The team’s quarterback said team members were leaning on each other.
”It’s definitely brought us a lot closer,” said Robert Stark. “Even closer than we’ve already been. Something like this is a wakeup call.”
Team members planned to dedicate every game this season to Justin Davis.