CINCINNATI (AP)—The teenage son of former Cincinnati Bengals running back Ickey Woods has died, days after he collapsed from an asthma attack.
School officials say 16-year-old Elbert Jovante Woods died Aug. 14 at a Cincinnati hospital.
ELBERT JOVANTE WOODS
The teen, who would have started as a cornerback at a local high school this season, was practicing with his varsity football team last Wednesday morning. He collapsed later that day and was taken to the hospital.
His head coach, Bill Leach, said Jovante was impressive in the classroom. They believe Woods was a NCAA Division 1 prospect due to his high GPA and test scores.
“I told the kids if there’s anyone to aspire to, aspire to what Jovante did he came to every work out, worked all the way through, always with a smile on his face, never complained,” said Leach.
Leach said his teammates loved him like a brother. One player held up Woods’ jersey for a team photo Saturday.
Scott Kaufman, the athletic director of the Princeton school district told the Cincinnati Enquire, “I am sure everyone here can only imagine the pain and sadness the Woods family is feeling right now,” Kaufman told the Enquirer.
“As I left the hospital, Jovante’s mom and dad both said that ‘God has a plan.’ They are both pillars of strength for their family and friends. The Woods family is sincerely grateful for the love, support and prayers that everyone has shown them during Jovante’s battle.”
Woods was remembered with a moment of silence before Sunday’s preseason game against the Denver Broncos.
Bengals president Mike Brown says Jovante was a gifted athlete and a talented student who showed a lot of promise.
Ickey Woods played for the Bengals from 1988 to 1991. He’s now the head coach of the Cincinnati Sizzle, a women’s football team, and he also runs the Ickey Woods Youth Foundation.