The mother of University of Miami sophomore running back Mike James was killed Monday in a central Florida car crash, authorities said.
James’ sister, Jasmine James Ansley, 25, was driving a Ford Explorer when a Toyota Corolla hit her at an intersection. Elgusta James, 47, who was not wearing a seat belt, was ejected from the front passenger seat and pronounced dead at the scene in Haines City, the Polk County Sheriff’s Office said.
Ansley’s 5-year-old son Jayden, who also was not wearing a seat belt, was ejected from the back seat, the sheriff’s office said. A helicopter flew him to an Orlando hospital in serious but stable condition. Ansley was in a hospital with injuries that were not considered life-threatening.
The Hurricanes canceled a walkthrough practice and some team meetings Monday afternoon. Some players met to pray after hearing the news.
”He is a member of our family,” Miami interim head coach Jeff Stoutland said in a statement. ”He grieves and we grieve. He hurts and we hurt. We are all here to support Mike and his family in any way possible.”
It was unknown if James will play in Miami’s bowl game against Notre Dame on Dec. 31. The Hurricanes are scheduled to resume practice Tuesday.
”Family is the foundation of our football program, and today the entire Hurricane family is grieving with Mike,” Miami athletic director Kirby Hocutt said.
James was third on the Hurricanes with 384 yards rushing and three touchdowns this season.
The Corolla’s driver, Paul Lopez Jr., 60, was not injured. Deputies were investigating and no charges were immediately filed.