High school football player died of blow to his chest

Tuesday, September 26th 2000, 12:00 am
By: News On 6

OMAHA, Neb. (AP) _ A 16-year-old Omaha North High School football player died of a blow to his chest while tackling a ball carrier, the Douglas County attorney's office said Tuesday.

Christopher Benniefield died of commotio cordis, or myocardial concussion, an autopsy showed. No drugs nor alcohol were in his system and the death was considered an accident, the attorney's office said in a news release.

Benniefield fell unconscious Sept. 15 during a play to stop a Millard West ball carrier. The 6-foot-1, 245-pound junior was taken to an Omaha hospital, where he was pronounced dead.

Nebraska School Activities Association officials said the death was the first since 1984, when a Marquette High player died after slipping into a coma.