The LSU Tigers are mourning the loss of basketball player Wayde Sims, who was shot and killed early Friday morning.
Sims, 20, was shot about a block away from Southern University’s football stadium in Baton Rouge, Louisiana. An altercation broke out just after midnight and Sims was shot near a Subway restaurant, according to The Advocate.
Police spokesman Sgt. L’Jean McKneely said Sims was transported to a nearby hospital, where he died from a gunshot wound.
“We are all devastated,” head coach Will Wade said in a statement. “We need your prayers for Wayde, for his family, for all of us. We are heartbroken.”
LSU basketball's Wayde Sims was shot and killed overnight.
— Sporting News (@sportingnews) September 28, 2018
LSU officials were notified of Sims’ death early Friday morning, and they have made counselors available to Sims’ teammates and friends.
Sims was entering his junior year at LSU after starting 10 games for the team last year. He would have been the fourth-leading returning scorer after averaging 5.6 points per game last season.
Sims was the 2014-15 Louisiana Gatorade Player of the Year at University High School in Baton Rouge. His father, Wayne Sims, also played basketball at LSU and was a teammate of Shaquille O’Neal for two seasons.
“Wayde Sims’ loss is simply unbelievable to us right now,” LSU athletic director Joe Alleva said. “There are no words that can express our sorrow for his parents and family. He was such a lovable young man who was full of joy. We are circling around his teammates and friends who need all the love and support we can give them. We are praying for his family, for his parents. God bless Wayde Sims.”
Many former LSU athletes remembered Sims on Twitter, as did rival basketball coaches in the SEC.
RIP Wayde Sims… Damn
— Jarvis Juice Landry (@God_Son80) September 28, 2018
Sick about the news of #WaydeSims of @LSUBasketball woke up to this, this morning and it’s heartbreaking for these young men to lose their lives at the hands of someone that shouldn’t make that choice for them! #RIP young Brah #Senseless
— Marcus Spears (@mspears96) September 28, 2018
Saying a prayer this morning for Wayde and the @LSUBasketball family. Very tough news to hear we've lost a young man just getting started. My condolences to his family, friends and teammates. https://t.co/K2yvrqfpbB
— John Calipari (@UKCoachCalipari) September 28, 2018
Devasted to hear of the passing of Wayde Sims. Our thoughts and prayers are with his family and the entire LSU community during this difficult time. Father God please take care of him!
— Bruce Pearl (@coachbrucepearl) September 28, 2018
During a Friday morning news conference, Wade told reporters that “basketball takes a back seat right now” and the university is just focused on helping the Sims’ family.
The Tigers finished last season with a 18-15 record, and they were eliminated in the second round of the NIT.
According to 247 Sports, LSU has the No. 4 class of incoming recruits and landed two five-star prospects. The Tigers will begin their season Nov. 6 against Southeastern Louisiana.
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