A college football tradition turned tragic early Wednesday morning when an unidentified Ohio State student went into cardiac arrest shortly after jumping into an on-campus lake as part of the Mirror Lake jump, an annual tradition held before Ohio State's rivalry game against University of Michigan.
The incident reportedly occurred around 12:20 a.m., at which point the other students were instructed to climb out of Mirror Lake immediately.
"Unfortunately after several hours of medical care, the young man removed from Mirror Lake this morning has passed away from his injuries," Ohio State’s department of public safety wrote in a statement. "At this time, the university is doing everything it can to identify the deceased. He is African American and medium build with tattoos on his left upper chest and right upper arm."
A snapshot of students celebrating Rivalry Week at Mirror Lake.
In the hours since the student's passing, the university has already called for the dissolution of this tradition.
"University leadership strongly agrees that we will work with our campus community to end this annual event," school spokesman Chris Davey announced in a written statement. "In spite of significant efforts taken to make this event a safer one, this tragedy has occurred ... [W]e cannot risk another tragedy."
According to the Columbus Dispatch, there were thousands of other Ohio State students at the lake last night participating in the annual jump, even as the temperature in Columbus, Ohio, dipped into the thirties after the sun set Tuesday night.
Tens of thousands of college football fans take part in high-risk traditions like the Mirror Lake jump every fall. We can only hope that this terrible news prompts other schools to similarly establish further safety measures.
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