Kent State student, football player Jason Bitsko dies unexpectedly

KENT, Ohio - A Kent State University student and athlete, Jason Bitsko, was found dead in his off-campus apartment Wednesday.

A university spokesperson said the man's roommate was asked to check on Bitsko after he did not show up for practice Wednesday morning. When the roommate went into Bitsko's room, he found him unresponsive on his bed.

Bitsko, 21, was set to begin his fourth year as the starting center on the school's football team.

He graduated from Wayne High School in Huber Heights, Ohio, and was studying marketing. The last Tweet sent out by a Twitter account that appears to be Bitsko's reads:

“Kent State University and the entire Kent community mourns his passing,” said Joel Nielsen, Kent State’s director of athletics. “We are heartbroken by the news of Jason’s death. Our thoughts and prayers go out to his family, friends, teammates and everyone whose lives he touched.”

“Our players, coaches and everyone involved with our team are hurting because he was family,” Kent State head football coach Paul Haynes said. “As a team, we will come together and get through this one day at a time.”

The school is providing counseling to student athletes and athletic department staff. Counseling is available at Psychological Services at the DeWeese Health Center at 330-672-2487, through the Counseling and Human Development Center in White Hall and the Psychological Clinic in Kent Hall.

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