Officials release tapes of 911 call regarding high school football players who collapsed

Posted at 10:01 PM, Aug 26, 2013
and last updated 2013-08-27 00:01:20-04

WEST VALLEY CITY -- FOX 13 News has received a copy of the 911 call Granger High School football coaches made when a player collapsed during practice on August 7.

By the end of the day, nine players went to the hospital for symptoms of heat exhaustion.

The emergency call came in a little after 10 a.m. The caller identified himself as a football coach at Granger High School, and he said a 17-year-old player had collapsed.

“I just got a football player here on the field that kind of stopped breathing for a little bit,” the caller said.

During the 11-minute recording, several voices are heard talking to the dispatcher, then the player as he slowly gains consciousness and paramedics arrive.

About 15 minutes after the ambulance arrived at the school, responders said a second player had collapsed and another crew was dispatched. Within a couple of hours, eight emergency vehicles were sent to the school.

Granite School District Spokesperson Ben Horsely said all nine players who went to the hospital returned to practice the next day.

Although there wasn’t an official investigation per se, Horsely said officials from the Utah High School Activities Association found the players had been receiving an adequate number of breaks and had access to water.

About halfway through the recorded emergency call, there’s an indication of what may have gone wrong.

The voice of one of the coaches can be heard talking to the semi-conscious player, saying, “You didn’t eat breakfast, did you?”

Horsely said most of the players admitted they had skipped breakfast that morning and were lifting weights before they hit the practice field, and coaches have since emphasized to players the importance of eating before practice and workouts.