Hall of Famer Selmon hospitalized
Hall of Fame defensive lineman Lee Roy Selmon was understood to be in serious condition Saturday in a Tampa hospital after suffering a major stroke.
His brother, Dewey Selmon, confirmed to Tampa's 10News that the Buccaneers legend was hospitalized Friday and was fighting to survive. It followed false early reports of his death.
The confusion was prompted by a statement issued erroneously by the former player's own restaurant chain earlier Friday which announced his "passing this afternoon" before paying tribute to the 56 year old, myFOXtampabay reported Saturday.
A spokesperson for Lee Roy Selmon Restaurants soon retracted the statement and apologized, saying, "We were misinformed and deeply regret the previous statement attributed to the company. Our prayers are with Lee Roy Selmon and his family."
Selmon is the lone Tampa Bay Buccaneers representative in the Pro Football Hall of Fame and is widely regarded as the franchise's best player. He played nine seasons with the Bucs.
From 1993-2001, Selmon served as an assistant athletic director at the University of South Florida.
USF President Judy Genshaft responded to news of his stroke Friday evening.
"We've learned that Lee Roy Selmon has been taken to the hospital," she said. "We are honoring his family's wishes for privacy. Our thoughts and prayers are with him and his family for his recovery."